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ESSA focuses on Active Ageing during Exercise Right Week 2019

ESSA focuses on Active Ageing during Exercise Right Week 2019
May 10, 2019

Exercise Right Week is an annual campaign run by Exercise & Sports Science Australia (ESSA) from the 20th – 26th May 2019 during which they are aiming to inspire Australians to “Move More, Age Better”.

“We want to not only encourage Australians to be more active, but to help people understand where to find the right advice when it comes to exercise,” says ESSA Chief Executive, Anita Hobson-Powell.

This year’s theme is “Active Ageing”, and we’re encouraging everyone to “Move More, Age Better”. Being physically active and staying fit and healthy will help you to get the most out of life, whatever your age.

Staying active throughout life not only improves your general health and well-being, it also helps to fight chronic diseases later in life. Exercise reduces your risk of developing conditions like diabetes, heart disease and some types of cancer.

Despite these benefits of regular exercise, only 17.2% of those aged over 65 are meeting the physical activity guidelines.

“Older adults should be doing some form of physical activity, no matter their age, weight, health problems or abilities, as there is a range of benefits that can improve their health,” says Hobson-Powell.

“It’s recommended that people aged 65 and older accumulate at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity on most, if not all days. This should include exercises that target fitness, strength, balance and flexibility.”

Being physically active also helps to improve quality of life and maintain independence as we age. In Australia, one third of adults aged over 65 will fall every year and it is estimated that 6% of these will result in a fracture. Exercise, especially resistance training, helps to strengthen bones and reduces the effects of sarcopenia (muscle loss) typically associated with ageing.

Exercise Right’s Tips for Active Ageing:

• Every little bit counts – Your daily exercise doesn’t have to be done all at once. Even short bursts of physical activity have a positive impact on both your physical and mental health. If you’re new to exercise, start by doing smaller amounts and gradually build from there.

• Reduce long periods of sitting – Sedentary behaviour is associated with poorer health outcomes, including an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Older adults should minimise time spent sitting each day and aim to break up periods of time spent being sedentary as often as possible.

• Get the right advice – There’s a lot of information out there when it comes to exercise, and it can be hard to know where to turn for the right advice. For those living with chronic conditions, Accredited Exercise Physiologists (AEPs) are the exercise experts in Australia. They are university-qualified allied health professionals who use exercise as medicine to prevent and manage chronic disease. There are over 5,000 AEPs around Australia, and their services are claimable under compensable schemes like Medicare.

To find an AEP near you, visit the ESSA website or talk to your GP, 

To learn more or get involved in Exercise Right Week, visit www.exerciseright.com.au.

Related Articles

21st March 2019 - ESSA highlights the role of physical activity in closing the health gap for Indigenous populations

8th March 2019 - ESSA celebrates industry pioneers on International Women’s Day

12th February 2019 - ESSA releases free eBook outlining the benefits of exercise for women’s health and wellness


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