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Why Retirement Communities with Outdoor Activities Are Popular


As we all know, retirement may refer to leaving the workforce, but it doesn’t mean life needs to slow down—not entirely! More and more seniors are choosing to spend their extra time being more physically active.


That being said, one of the more popular benefits of living in a retirement community in Welland, and across Canada, is the option of outdoor activities. From running clubs to gardening groups to curling clubs and skating rinks, senior living has an abundance of activities to keep you or your loved ones active.


Health and Wellness Benefits of Outdoor Activities for Seniors


Research has continuously proven that spending time outdoors in fresh air and nature soothes the soul while keeping the body and mind fit. Health and wellness benefits for seniors can be found in an array of outdoor activities that appeal to anyone’s passion. Become one with nature by enjoying regular walks, gardening, playing outdoor sports, or join a bird-watching group.


Moving to a retirement residence can benefit any senior at any age or mobility. The Journal of Aging and Health published findings of how outdoor activities improved daily behaviours of a group of participating seniors. The study concluded that those who spent more time outside had fewer aching muscles, better sleep habits, and improved mobility.


Here are just a few benefits of outdoor activities for seniors.


Improve Mental Health


Many times, the psychological health of seniors is overlooked as their physical health takes centre stage. As mentioned, being outside on a daily basis can help improve one’s mental health. Whether participating in a group activity or taking a walk alone, many seniors report having reduced stress and anxiety. Many also feel their mood improves after a walk outside with an overwhelming sense of happiness.


Improve Physical Health


The great outdoors has much to offer including improving one’s physical health. In addition to being a good cardio workout, a brisk walk allows exposure to natural Vitamin D. Our bodies are dependent on this vitamin to prevent inflammation and pain. As we age, the risk grows for diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, heart issues, and other serious conditions with low levels of Vitamin D.


Strengthen the Immune System


As we get older, our immune system begins to slow down. We depend on our immune system to prevent and fight infection. Outdoor activities have been shown to boost white blood cells, which the immune system depends on. A healthy immune system also helps seniors to recover quickly from any illness or injury.


Improve Sleep


Remember the times we sent our children outside to play in the afternoon and early evening to burn off energy and sleep through the night? That same reasoning can work for us as we age. Spending time in the fresh air can help ease our minds and bodies at bedtime for a restful sleep.


Improve Relationships with Others


Being at one’s best, both physically and mentally, can help improve relationships with friends and family. When we feel good, we want to spread our happiness with those we love. Participating in social activities will strengthen those bonds as well as make new friendships.


Outdoor Activities for Seniors at The Grand Canal Retirement Residence


Life depends on moving and moving in fresh air is good for everybody! Take part in outdoor activities such as walking groups, hiking trips, skating, curling, boating, and even gardening. Here are just some of the fun outdoor activities waiting for you at The Grand Canal Retirement Community!


Hiking and Trails


As with walking, hiking has its own added benefits for all ages. Hiking along the trails in Welland helps to ease the mind while improving physical health, including building stronger bones and maintaining a healthy heart.


Furthermore, a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science found that participants who hiked for 90 minutes in nature had a decrease in the brain function associated to depression compared to walking in an urban setting.


Skating


Skating is an excellent form of exercise as it works various muscle groups and outdoor rinks provide a chance for fresh air! Inside or out, seniors will benefit tenfold by participating in skating, at any speed. It has been shown to be adequately invigorating to help with coordination and reduce the risk of heart disease.


Curling


Curling offers fun and exercise opportunities for all ages, and abilities. In fact, the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity published a study by Queen’s University that focused on the affects of curling and older adults. The findings found that the sport helped seniors to be more active, happier, energetic, and report fewer depressive thoughts. Like with many sports, curling also provides the opportunity for social interaction.


Walking Way and Parks


Welland offers easy-walking pathways and trails to keep one active. The Welland Canal Parkway Trail runs nearly 40 kilometres from St. Catherine’s to Port Colborne, through Welland. Other local trails are located throughout the city. Merritt Island is a local nature park with a loop trail of 6.1 kilometres that interfaces with the Welland Canal Trail.


Welland Community Wellness Centre


The Welland Community Wellness Centre is adjacent to The Grand Canal Retirement home granting indoor access to both buildings. The centre offers activities and programs year-round and is fully accessible to people of all ages and mobility.


This complex offers activities geared towards seniors such as music nights, art classes, and space for event gatherings. The location along the Welland Recreational Waterway provides the perfect setting for use of walking trails, boating, and fishing opportunities. In addition, the centre has a library, a theatre, computer lab, and therapeutic hot tubs.


Choose The Grand Canal Retirement Residence to Call Home


The Grand Canal Retirement Residence promotes an active lifestyle by providing programs to boost one’s mental and physical health. Our certified team members are ready to welcome you to this new chapter in your life by providing social and learning programs. We believe in living our lives with purpose and treating each day as a new adventure! Contact us at (905) 218-3650 or email info@grandcanal.ca to start living your best life with retirement living in Welland!


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