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If you have a chronic medical condition please consult a physician before starting any exercise program.
Contact Information
Los Angeles County
Department of Public Health
Cardiovascular Health Program
Division of Chronic Disease and
Injury Prevention
695 S. Vermont Ave., 14th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90005
Tel: (213) 351-7887
Fax: (213) 637-4879
pacvh@ph.lacounty.gov

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Resources for Older Adults
Benefits of Regular Physical Activity


  • Helps maintain the ability to live independently and reduces the risk of falling and fracturing bones.

  • Reduces the risk of dying from coronary heart disease and of developing high blood pressure, colon cancer, and diabetes.
  • Helps maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints.
  • Helps people with chronic, disabling conditions improve their stamina and muscle strength.
  • Reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression and fosters improvements in mood and feelings of well-being.
  • Helps maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints.
  • Helps control joint swelling and pain associated with arthritis.

  • Key Messages

  • Older adults, both male and female, can benefit from regular physical activity.

  • Physical activity need not be strenuous to achieve health benefits.
  • Older adults can obtain significant health benefits with a moderate amount of physical activity, preferably daily. A moderate amount of activity can be obtained in longer sessions of moderately intense activities (such as walking) or in shorter sessions of more vigorous activities (such as fast walking or stairwalking).
  • Previously sedentary people who begin physical activity programs should start with short sessions (5-10 minutes) of physical activity and gradually build up to the desired level of activity.
  • Additional health benefits can be gained through greater amounts of physical activity, either by increasing the duration, intensity, or frequency. Because risk of injury increases at high levels of physical activity, care should be taken not to engage in excessive amounts of activity.
  • Previously sedentary older adults who begin physical activity programs should start with short intervals of moderate physical activity (5-10 minutes) and gradually build up to the desired amount.
  • Older adults should consult with a physician before beginning a new physical activity program.
  • In addition to cardiorespiratory endurance (aerobic) activity, older adults can benefit from muscle-strengthening activities. Stronger muscles help reduce the risk of falling and improve the ability to perform the routine tasks of daily life.
  • Source: CDC Physical Activity Website
    Links to other websites and resources:

    National Resources



  • NIH Senior Health


  • This website provides older adults with information and resources related exercise.

  • Weight Information Network: Active at Any Size


  • Developed by the NIH, DHHS, and Weight Information Network, this website helps people of all sizes become more physically active.

  • Measuring Physical Activity Intensity


  • This CDC website provides guidance on how to measure your level of intensity.

  • Adding Physical Activity To Your Life


  • This CDC website offers advice on how to incorporate physical activity to your everyday living.

  • Growing Stronger: Strength Training For Older Adults


  • This CDC website offers information and resources about strength-training for older adults.

  • Physical Activity For Everyone Videos


  • The CDC developed these videos to help explain the physical activity guidelines, give you tips on how to meet the guidelines, and show you how to do muscle strengthening exercises properly.

  • Be Active Your Way: A Guide for Older Adults


  • Created by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, this guide will help you incorporate physical activity into your life—your way. It can help you decide the number of days, types of activities, and times that fit your schedule.

  • AARP: Physical Activity Resources and Articles


  • Find a variety of different articles and resources related to older adults and physical activity.

  • U.S EPA: Growing Smarter, Living Healthier: A Guide to Smart Growth and Active Aging
    This guidebook is intended for older adults who are interested in how our communities work and how we might help them become more ‘age-friendly.’

  • American Council on Exercise Get Fit! Health and Fitness Information


  • This website provides information a variety of fitness information, fitness videos, and other resources.



    California Resources

     
  • Champions for Change Be Active Tips


  • Find simple tips on how to increase your physical activity levels.

     

  • President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports: For Older Adults


  • The President's Challenge is a program that encourages all Americans to make being active part of their everyday lives. No matter what your activity and fitness level, the President's Challenge can help motivate you to improve. Start earning Presidential awards for your daily physical activity and fitness efforts.

  • Kaiser Thrive


  • Find tools, tips, and information on staying healthy.





    LA County Resources

  • LA County Be Active Resource Directory


  • Listed in this directory is information on nutrition and physical activity resources located throughout Los Angeles County. In addition, a wide variety of internet resources are included.

  • County of Los Angeles Parks and Recreation


  • Find out the latest information about the Department of Parks and Recreation.

  • Park Finder Locator Page


  • Find a park near you using this Los Angeles County Parks and Recreation locator page and click on the link to access "Play for Life" videos on YouTube.

  • LA County Be Active Resource Directory


  • Listed in this directory is information on nutrition and physical activity resources located throughout Los Angeles County. In addition, a wide variety of internet resources are included.

  • Los Angeles County Nutrition Program


  • Check out this comprehensive website offering information on eating right and staying healthy. Find cookbooks, healthy eating guides, important healthy information, and a variety of other resources.


    Links to Heart Health Related Websites

  • National Health, Lung, and Blood Institute


  • This website provides a variety of health information ranging from blood and heart diseases to sleeping disorders.

  • American Heart Association


  • Find information, resources, and tools to help you and your family maintain a healthy heart.

  • California Department of Public Health Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program


  • Find information on how to reduce premature death and disability from heart disease and stroke.

  • American Diabetes Association


  • This website provides diabetes related information and resources.


    Downloadable Forms

  • Be Active Your Way: A Guide for Adults


  • Created by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, this guide will help you incorporate physical activity into your life—your way. It can help you decide the number of days, types of activities, and times that fit your schedule.

  • Report of the Surgeon General: Physical Activity and Health


  • Provides key messages, facts, and data about physical activity in adults.

  • CDC Physical Activity Level Examples


  • This sheet provides examples of moderate aerobic activity routines and vigorous aerobic activity routines.

  • Los Angeles County Office of Senior Health


  • Find the latest news, information, and resources for older adults.

  • Champions for Change: Physical Activity For Your Health, Your Neighborhood, Your Life


  • Is this guide to help increase physical activity in you, your community, and your family.

  • AHRQ: Trends in Health Care Expenditures for the Elderly Age 65 and over: 2006 versus 1996


  • This statistical brief compares summary statistics on health care expenditures and expenditure distributions by type of service and source of payment for the elderly (age 65 and over) in 2006 relative to the elderly in 1996.


    Tools

  • CDC BMI Calculator


  • This calculator provides BMI and the corresponding BMI weight status category. Use this calculator for adults, 20 years old and older.

  • Physical Activity Calorie Calculator


  • The Calorie Control Council developed this calculator to help you see how many calories you expend doing your favorite exercise or activity.

  • MyPyramid.gov: Inside the Physical Activity Pyramid


  • Click on this link to see how many calories you burn for different activities.

  • Make Your Calories Count


  • Developed by the FDA, Make Your Calories Count is an interactive learning program that provides consumers with information to help plan a healthful diet while managing calorie intake. The exercises will help consumers use the food label to make decisions about which food choice is right for them.

  • Portion Disortion


  • Developed by the DHHS, NIH, and NHLBI, this interactive learning module helps you compare today's portion sizes with those from 20 years ago. Be amazed at how much portions have changed!

    How Much Physical Activity do Older Adults Need?
    Weekly, older adults need at least:

    • 2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity
    • (i.e., brisk walking)

      AND
    • muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms).

    OR

    • 1 hour and 15 minutes (75 minutes) of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity
    • (i.e., jogging or running)

      AND

    • muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms).


    Source:
    CDC Physical Activity Website

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