A certain level of coordination is needed to move and exercise efficiently. Integrating balance and agility exercises into your workout routines can benefit coordination. The following exercises are ideal for seniors looking to improve their motor coordination.
Maintaining independence and well-being is important to active aging adults. Older people often notice that balance, coordination and memory decrease with age. I know I have! Exercising in the golden years is important to train for the activities of daily living.
For active aging adults, motor coordination is necessary to perform simple and complex tasks such as walking, cleaning and climbing stairs. Opening a jar may seem like an easy task, but when you look at the hand and eye movements involved, it becomes apparent that this task requires complex motor coordination.
Coordination exercises involve internal and external processing that trains proprioception, balance and timing. Common coordination exercises include:
• Eye and hand coordination
• Hand and foot coordination
• Eye and foot coordination
• Reaction to Cue (coordinating movement based on a cue in a timely manner)
• A combination of the above
Integrating balance and agility exercises into your exercise routine can benefit coordination. These exercises, from St. Louis, Brentwood, and Clayton, MO personal trainers are ideal for senior fitness and improving your motor coordination.
STANDING BALANCE WITH BALL TOSSES
Best for: Eye and Hand Coordination
Beginners can keep both feet on the floor. Intermediates: balance on one leg with the opposite leg lifted at 90 degrees at the hip and knee.
Use a tennis ball, Pilates ball or a soft medicine ball and toss the ball into each hand. The eyes should follow the ball. If performing a balance exercise, complete a set with each leg balancing.
CONTRALATERAL AND IPSILATERAL MARCHING
Best for: Hand and Foot Coordination
Contralateral marching- raise your right arm overhead and simultaneously lift your left leg at 90 degrees at the hip. Hold for three to five seconds and release to the starting position. Next, lift your left arm overhead and simultaneously lift yourright leg to 90 degrees. Continue alternating sides.
Ipsilateral marching— raise your right arm overhead and simultaneously lift their right leg at 90 degrees at the hip. Hold for three to five seconds and lower to the starting position. Next, raise your left arm overhead and simultaneously lift your left leg at 90 degrees at the hip.
WALK, TOSS AND CATCH
Best for: Eye and Hand Coordination and Hand and Feet Coordination
Walk back and forth while bouncing a tennis ball or something similar back and forth. If the ball is bounced too far in front, the you might react with more effort in order to catch the ball.
For more information on senior fitness, contact Maurie Cofman, CMES, CES, TBMM-CES, Personal Trainer, Certified Medical Exercise Specialist, Health Coach and Corrective Exercise Specialist in the St. Louis, Brentwood, and Clayton, MO area.