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5 Exercises that Can Help Seniors Optimize Stroke Recovery

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Ideal Exercises for Older Stroke Survivors in Sonoma County, CA

Once they’ve passed their initial recovery, stroke survivors are typically advised to exercise for at least 15 to 20 minutes each day. The right exercises will be challenging yet simple enough to do without causing frustration. All these exercises target common issues stroke survivors face with regaining their strength and mobility.

1. Sit-Stands

Seniors need to be able to sit and stand up as part of their normal daily functioning. This exercise helps seniors begin to develop the balance and muscle coordination they need to perform this action. A sit-stand is exactly what it sounds like. Stroke survivors sit in chairs and position themselves properly to stand up. During the first few attempts at this exercise, a caregiver should be nearby to offer assistance and also give pointers, such as showing the senior where to position his or her feet to obtain a better sense of balance. This exercise can also be enhanced by adding chair walks to it. A chair walk involves sitting down and lifting one leg at a time, which further strengthens the leg muscles.

Older adults who need help exercising should consider professional in-home care. Santa Rosa in-home care professionals can be a wonderful boon to seniors. Whether they require around-the-clock supervision or just need assistance with exercise and household tasks a few days a week, seniors can enjoy a higher quality of life with the help of trusted in-home caregivers.

2. Mini Squats with Support

Once seniors begin to feel comfortable standing up, they can use the backs of their chairs to do mini squats. Doing squats strengthens the muscles needed for walking properly. A mini squat is different from a full squat because seniors don’t need to lower their bodies as far. Instead, they should bend at the knees and squat downward without letting their knees go over their toes. Doing multiple reps of these also builds endurance.

3. Crumpling Paper with Both Hands

This exercise might not seem like much of a workout, but it’s excellent for helping stroke survivors rebuild fine motor strength in their wrists and hands. A stroke survivor should sit down at a table and hold a piece of paper in both hands. Then he or she simply crumples up the paper into a ball. The trick to this exercise is having the senior pay attention to how each hand feels, which helps the brain begin to recognize the need to strengthen the affected hand.

A professional caregiver can be a fantastic source of information and support for a senior recovering from a stroke. The type of elder care seniors need can vary. Some need assistance a few hours a day, while others require more extensive around-the-clock assistance. At Home Care Assistance, we tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual care needs, and the plans can be adjusted at any time.

4. Wrist Curls

Hand mobility is heavily influenced by wrist strength. Seniors who have strokes often lose at least part of the functioning of their hands, and wrist curls may bring it back. This activity can be done anywhere with a table and a water bottle. The senior should place his or her affected arm on a table with the forearm facing up, then place the bottle in his or her hand. He or she then curls the bottle toward the upper part of the arm. Over time, seniors should be able to do more reps and notice an improvement in their range of motion.

5. Trunk Rotations

Twisting the trunk area builds the core muscles without making seniors try to do sit-ups. This exercise is performed in a seated position, which is perfect for stroke survivors who are still unable to stand without assistance. While sitting, seniors should twist their bodies from one side to another by rotating their trunks. They should notice a gentle stretching sensation as their muscles begin to respond.

Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Santa Rosa, CA, live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner in caregiving for your loved one. Contact one of our experienced Care Managers today at (707) 843.4368 to learn more about our reliable in-home care services. 

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