Active Aging Week: October 5-11
It is likely that we would all love to age not only gracefully, but actively. Active Aging Week celebrates exactly that – aging and the benefits of active living. Thousands of Active Aging Week supporters honor this time as a means to showcase how positive aging can be by taking full advantage of life’s offerings and promoting wellness and health.
What Is Active Aging Week?
Each year, near the last full week of September or the first week of October, marks Active Aging Week. This week was introduced by the International Council of Active Aging (ICAA), an association known as a leader in the active-aging industry.
Active Aging Week celebrates aging by promoting wellness activities and age-friendly exercise programs for adults over the age of 50. The ICAA strives to bring access to activities like these to as many older adults as possible in a safe, friendly, and fun environment on a national scale.
Unlike many other week-long observations, the exact dates of recognition for Active Aging Week fluctuate slightly, but with an intended purpose. The dates were determined with the goal of coinciding as closely as possible to October 1st, which is International Day of Older Persons. Because of the slight irregularity in annual dating, organizations may, if preferred, shift the dates of celebration and hosting by a day or two if need be.
The Importance of Active Aging Week
Aging should not be viewed as a negative process in life, but all too often, it is. Active Aging Week plays a vital role in reminding society that adults over 50 can find fulfillment in all aspects of life - physical, social, spiritual, emotional, intellectual, vocational, and environmental.
Keeping our bodies active is key to keeping our minds active. In fact, research has shown that maintaining an active lifestyle can actually slow the aging process, keeping our bodies younger and healthy.
How to Participate in Active Aging Week
Organizations that have an age-friendly atmosphere often host Active Aging Week events for community participants to join in for free. Organizations such as senior centers, health clubs, parks and recreation centers, active living and continuing care retirement communities, and age-restricted living communities may all offer events to encourage participation in Active Aging Week.
Activities to Consider
Over the past years, there have been a plethora of activities developed by host organizations to observe Active Aging Week within their communities. These can range in creativity from a simple brisk walk to a cooking demonstration to a round of mini golf or a balloon volleyball competition. There are no limits to the diversity of celebrating life’s energizing possibilities. Ask around your local community, or look online or in your local paper to see if there are any upcoming events that you can participate in.
In addition to searching for special local events, you can consider some of the following ideas if you are looking for ways to get active during Active Aging Week:
- Group or solo walks or hikes
- Group or solo exercise, yoga, or Pilates classes
- Tennis or golf game
- Dancing lessons
- Visit a museum or art exhibit
- Join a low-impact aerobics class
- Take a cooking class
- Partake in a stress management or guided meditation class
You can also consider sharing a personal story (either online or in person) of active aging and how it has benefitted you or a loved one. You might even consider taking your story to social media to bring awareness to this weeklong event. Be sure to include the hashtag #activeagingweek so others can find your inspiring story.
At MidAmerica Orthopaedics, we are fully aware of the negative impact that an unmanaged and underutilized body can have on overall health. We believe whole-heartedly that individuals of all ages deserve the right to the highest quality of life possible. Staying active, focusing on nutrition, and seeing the appropriate professionals to address the aches, pains, and injuries that life may throw at you will give you the best chance at being able to uncover the “fountain of youth”.
If you have found your activity level waning as you age, consider Active Aging Week as an opportunity to reunite your body, mind, and spirit with action, movement, and stimulation. Always talk to your health care professional before beginning any new programs or lifestyle changes.
If you have orthopaedic concerns that are preventing you from participating in activity or wellness programs, please call us today at (708) 237-7200 or request an appointment online so that you can get back on track to a healthier lifestyle.