The benefits of exercise into later life are well documented as studies continue to emerge in support of it. One recent such study pertaining to better health in later life with the inclusion of exercise was of particular interest as it took data from its participants over a lengthy 20 year period. We’ve got some of the findings below.
One of the great things about exercise being so beneficial to healthy ageing is that there are so many different ways to do it and it’s something everyone can partake in. This particular study investigated what type of exercise individuals, if started early, would take with them into their later years. With keeping active so important, it makes sense to find out which activities we are most likely to continue with later on in life.
We reported recently on how we can get the health benefits of exercise in later life – you can read more about that here. But fitting physical activity in - however that is - can yield benefits such as decreased risk of dementia, osteoarthritis and bone fractures as well as numerous other mental and social benefits. It really is key to healthy ageing.
The main finding from this study was that men (it was only men who were surveyed) who are physically active in midlife are more likely to continue that habit into older age and reap the benefits. Completing any physical activity in midlife, is a positive.
As for the exercise if completed that’s most likely to last until middle age - it’s sport as supposed to walking, recreational activity, home improvement (DIY) or gardening/chores.
The science behind it is thought to relate to developing the “necessary motor skills needed to establish a lifelong habit”. As formal activity or sport is often highly structured, it could be why getting into a habit of playing a sport lasts so late in life.
Of interest also is that throughout life as major events such as retirement occur so does the amount of frequency and exercise change. As well-meaning as our intentions our, it seems life really does get in the way sometimes!
Nearly 3,500 men were studied for up to 20 years.
If you’re looking to support your physical activity with some sports socks, you can shop our range here. Otherwise have a think at what sports you enjoy now - the benefits of taking one up could be with you for decades!