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What is the Best Home Exercise Equipment for Older Adults?

By Margaret Manning February 28, 2016 Health and Fitness

I used to think that staying in shape was the same at any age. Until recently, I would have laughed at the concept of exercise equipment for older adults. After all, do older adults really have different needs when it comes to exercise equipment? Now, in my mid-60s, I am not laughing anymore!

Is Staying in Shape After 60 Possible?

Like many women my age, I care deeply about healthy aging. I want to have the strength to stay independent, the balance to explore the world around me and the longevity to see my grandchildren grow into adults.

There’s just one problem. Staying in shape after 60 is hard. Really hard. Maybe it’s our hormones that make losing weight after 60 difficult. Perhaps our bodies are just tired from decades of activity.

Whatever the reasons, it’s clear that many of us need a little extra help when it comes to getting in shape.

Is Going to the Gym the Only Option?

Over the last few years, I’ve made good on my commitment to healthy living. I walk at least twice a day. I enjoy Jazzercise and Zumba classes at my local gym. I have even become addicted to gentle yoga and chair yoga DVDs that I use at home.

Despite these activities, I still feel like I can do more to stay in shape. Part of the reason for this is that I spend 90% of my day at home.

Like many women my age, I am still working part-time. Even though I left my corporate job behind, several years ago, I still spend most of my time behind a desk.

As a result, I have decided that I need to get some home exercise equipment to supplement my walks and fitness classes.

The question is, which equipment should I get? Should I buy an exercise bike? Should I consider a rowing machine? Actually, this sounds appealing. I could even position my TV in front of the rowing machine and watch Person of Interest (my new favorite show), while I work out.

Or, perhaps I’m thinking too big. Maybe I should get an “exercise peddler” to put under my desk. Or, maybe a kettle-bell would do the trick.

What is the Best Home Exercise Equipment for Older Adults?

Like many of you, I have simple requirements for my next piece of exercise equipment. I want it to be easy to use. I want to be able to exercise for short periods at a time. Finally, I don’t want a complicated piece of large machinery in my living room. I want something simple, safe, effective and easy to use.

Community Feedback on the Best Exercise Equipment for Older Adults

Reading through your comments, one thing is for certain – the women in our community are on the move! Collectively, you are playing tennis, experiencing gentle yoga, lifting weights, doing cardio and going swimming. You are walking and running, climbing and playing sports of all kinds. So much for “seniors” being slow and inactive!

Many women in the community said that they love to take advantage of local senior exercise classes. Others simply enjoy riding their bike or taking a stroll around the neighborhood. But, when it comes to actual exercise equipment, there were plenty of opinions.

Some women opted for the simplicity of kettle bells. I actually have one of these by my bed and I give it a swing every morning before breakfast.

By far, the most popular piece of exercise equipment was the good old stationary bike. There are several reasons for this. Many of us still have an old bike sitting around the house from our younger years. Others appreciate the low-impact nature of riding a bike. It’s much easier on the joints than running, for example. Others, like myself, love to listen to audiobooks when they work out and stationary bikes are great for this kind of multi-tasking.

Do you also love your stationary bike? Or, do you have a different opinion? I’d love to hear what you think!

What home exercise equipment have you found to be most effective? What criteria do you have for exercise equipment? Have these requirements changed, now that you are a little older? Please join the conversation

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The Author

Margaret Manning is the founder of Sixty and Me. She is an entrepreneur, author and speaker. Margaret is passionate about building dynamic and engaged communities that improve lives and change perceptions. Margaret can be contacted at

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