National Senior Health & Fitness Day Date in the current year: May 29, 2024

National Senior Health & Fitness Day National Senior Health & Fitness Day is celebrated annually on the last Wednesday of May. Its main goals are to promote senior health and wellness nationwide, and to encourage older Americans to do everything they can to stay healthy, fit, and safe.

Older people face a unique set of health challenges, especially in low- to middle-income countries. While many people in their 60s and 70s are still relatively healthy, fit and active, particularly in developed countries, once people turn 80, they generally become increasingly frail. Many older people have at least one chronic condition, and some suffer from multiple conditions.

Although it is impossible to stop aging, there are ways for older adults to stay healthy and fit for as long as possible. Moderate physical activity helps older people to maintain muscle strength, reduces the risk of cardiovascular conditions, helps to cope with anxiety, reduces fall risk, and has many other health benefits.

Adults aged 65 and over should aim to be physically active ever day, even if it is just walking to the nearest store, around the block, or to the kitchen to make a cup of tea. It is also recommended to do light exercise that improves balance, flexibility and strength at least twice a week. The exercise doesn’t have to be rigorous; yoga, pilates, tai chi and swimming are great examples of exercise suitable for older people.

National Senior Health & Fitness Day was launched in 1993 by the Mature Market Resource Center (MMRC), a national information clearinghouse for professionals working in the older adult market. Since its inception, the observance has evolved into the largest older adult health and wellness event in the United States, with more than 1,000 local events and activities held across the country and more than 100,000 senior Americans participating in them. Since National Senior Health & Fitness Day is a federal trademark, organizations that want to host events must register and pay a fee in order to legally use the event name and logo.

Health and fitness events and activities for seniors are held at senior centers, retirement communities, hospitals, houses of worship, park and recreation districts, health clubs, and other community locations that cater to older adults. They are non-competitive and can vary widely depending on the interests of the local seniors and the organizations that hosts the event. Activities may include, but are not limited to, health information workshops, presentations, free health screenings, health fairs, low-impact exercise demonstrations, fitness walks, and more.

If you’re a senior, the best way to participate in National Senior Health & Fitness Day is to attend an event near you. If you’re on a younger side, you can still get involved! Encourage your parents, grandparents or in-laws to participate in a local event or remind them to schedule a health check with their healthcare provider, volunteer at a senior center or retirement home, and spread the word about the campaign on social media with the hashtags #NationalSeniorHealthAndFitnessDay and SeniorHealthAndFitnessDay.

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