As we age, it’s easy to feel like there’s nothing new to learn or that it’s too late to start a new hobby. However, research shows that learning something new can have numerous physical and mental health benefits, regardless of age. It can help with mental alertness and even reduce the risk of illnesses like Alzheimer’s.
Whether you’re looking to try something you’ve never done before or revisit a pastime, breaking away from your everyday routine can be just what the doctor ordered. Here are eleven outdoor and indoor hobbies you or your aging loved one can start enjoying now.
Gardening is one of the most popular hobbies for seniors, with about 35% of people over 55 engaging in some form of gardening. It offers low-impact physical exercise that can improve flexibility, strength, and balance, making it an excellent choice for seniors with mobility challenges. Many seniors also enjoy joining gardening clubs or participating in community garden projects, which provide opportunities to meet others who share their interests. This social interaction can help reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation, which are common among seniors.
Needlework refers to the use of a needle and thread to create decorative or functional items, such as embroidery, cross-stitch, or knitting. Engaging in needlework can enhance fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination and provide a sense of accomplishment and creativity.
Reading is an excellent hobby for seniors due to its various health and cognitive benefits. With more free time on their hands, seniors can benefit greatly from reading as it helps them stay sharp. Research studies have shown that reading is linked to a lower risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, it can help keep seniors active and engaged with the world, which can help prevent loneliness and depression.
A study of adults 40 and older found that taking 8,000 steps or more per day, compared to only taking 4,000 steps, was associated with a 51% lower risk of death from all causes. Setting time aside each morning or evening for a light stroll can help seniors maintain strength and endurance, among other physical benefits, and it can be great for their mental health by giving them something to look forward to each day.
Scrapbooking is a creative hobby that involves organizing and displaying photographs and other materials in an artistic way. It can help strengthen cognitive function and memory by providing opportunities to reminisce about past experiences and events.
Arts and Crafts
Arts and crafts are one of the many hobbies for seniors that allows them to express their creativity while also reducing stress levels. According to a study by the National Endowments for the Arts, art-related activities can lead to better health outcomes for older adults, including fewer doctor visits and less medication. Engaging in arts and crafts can also enhance dexterity and fine motor skills, among many other physical and mental health benefits.
Genealogy can be a gratifying hobby for seniors as they dive into their family history. It can be a fun way to walk down memory lane or learn something new about their ancestors, providing a fresh topic of conversation with loved ones and their friends.
Puzzle-solving involves putting together a jigsaw puzzle or solving a crossword puzzle, Sudoku, or other brain-teasing games. It can help improve cognitive function and memory by exercising the brain.
Fishing is a calming hobby that connects seniors with nature, motivating them to get out of the house and benefit from some fresh air and fun with family and friends or just by themselves. It can also reduce stress, improve hand-eye coordination and balance, and potentially give them a sense of achievement—depending on their success that is!
Cooking and Baking
Did you know cooking and baking is the 2nd most popular hobby in the U.S.? Cooking and baking are hobbies that allow seniors to be creative in the kitchen and improve their culinary skills. It can also provide a sense of accomplishment, improve cognitive function and memory, and promote healthy eating habits.
Volunteering is a rewarding hobby that allows seniors to give back to their community and stay active. It can also provide a sense of purpose and social connection for those experiencing feelings of isolation.
How can HomeWell help your loved one enjoy their favorite hobbies?
Hobbies for seniors can provide a multitude of health benefits, and the great news is that it’s never too late to pick up something new or pick back up where you left off.
If you and your family could benefit from some company to join your elderly loved one as they learn new hobbies or rediscover some of their favorite pastimes, HomeWell is here to help. Our Life Enrichment Activities Program™️ (LEAP) is expertly designed to address the adverse effects of social isolation by helping them do more of the things they enjoy with a compassionate caregiver. From taking part in their favorite indoor activities to accompanying and monitoring them outside, you can rest assured knowing our caregivers are committed to your loved one leading a happier, healthier life at home.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you or your loved one enjoy some of their favorite hobbies and live life to the fullest.