Along with maintaining a healthy diet, a supportive social circle, and getting regular exercise, it is important for Seniors to find time for leisure and relaxation.

Leisure activities are effective in preventing depression in Seniors by brightening up their routines and engaging with others in a positive and healthy way and avoiding feelings of isolation and disconnection.

Take a look at the leisure activities below and remember that incorporating these activities into any Senior’s day to day will do wonders for mental health and happiness.

Pets & Animals 
Who said being social was limited to those with only two legs? Dogs, cats, even rabbits provide joy to so many of us, and there are countless therapeutic, mental, and physical benefits that our furry friends can provide. 

Research shows that spending time with animals lowers heart rate, blood pressure, and stress levels. Over the long term, consistent interaction with a pet can even lower cholesterol, prevent depression, and protect against stroke or heart disease.

While we are still learning about dementia care options and how to improve the lives of those living with Alzheimer’s Disease, studies have shown that pet therapy improves patients’ moods and decreases irritability.

The therapeutic physical touch from pet contact and the mental connection between pets and Seniors can improve quality of life, and the bond that is shared between the two can often be stronger than between people.

Chair Yoga 
Chair yoga is an excellent way to get exercise when mobility issues are an issue. It has all the same benefits of regular yoga, and it’s a fun, healthy activity.Chair yoga is a perfect workout for Seniors:

Who have issues with balance
Who are looking to start yoga slowly
Who have injuries or flexibility concerns
Who deal with stress and anxiety
Who want to try something new in their daily routine

Chair yoga is extremely beneficial for physical health, as the poses build strength and flexibility, and it also helps with relaxation and breathing techniques, which can alleviate stress, pain, and fatigue.  At-home workouts are customizable, and even 30 minutes every couple of days goes a long way!

Colouring Books 
In the last few years, colouring books have come back into fashion because it forces us to stop and tune out the world for a little while by getting creative. All you need is a box of pencil crayons and a well-designed colouring book, found at any book store, and a couple of hours to get those pencils moving.

For Seniors, colouring provides benefits including anxiety and stress reduction, focus development, motor skill enhancement, and brain relaxation. 

Colouring books specifically designed for Seniors are available, and there are also books that concentrate on ways to decrease stress or anxiety with meditative shapes and patterns.

It can be a pleasant way to enjoy a conversation and a cup of tea while colouring in those shapes and patterns, too.

There are countless ways to improve the lives of Seniors, and these are just a couple of at-home activity examples that you might want to discuss with your loved one. Ask them what they’d like to do – you might be surprised at what kind of ideas they will share.