I saw a fabulous picture the other day with an older lady playing soccer with a bunch of kids that said, “Just because you are getting old, doesn’t mean you have to be old”. We often think of aging, especially after 60, as a lifetime ahead of doom and gloom, filled with aches, pains and loss of function. This however needn’t be the case for most individuals. As Brian Sharkey put it; maintaining an active lifestyle will add life to your years as well as years to your life! (Sharkey, 1997).
We all know that as we mature through life, there are many physiological changes that occur within the body. These include changes in: bone mass; muscles (generally with associated loss of strength); cardiovascular fitness; respiratory fitness; the nervous system; metabolism and body composition. Research has not been conclusive as to whether this is due to age per se or as a result of decreased activity that generally occurs with aging. However, research has proven that maintaining an active lifestyle has slowed the deterioration process.