Exercise, be cautious when doing chores in your golden years

LETTERS: We seniors are cautioned against suffering a fall. For those aged 60 and above, a fall may dislocate a joint, or break or fracture a bone.

Hence the well-intentioned advice to sit and not stand when changing trousers, or stay in a downstairs room instead of one upstairs to avoid having to climb up or come down a staircase and not step on and up the rungs of a ladder for household chores.

These activities involve muscular movements. We are told that we need to use our muscles to maintain and strengthen them. Lack of use will lead to their weakening, deterioration and even dysfunction.

When do we start restraining ourselves? Begin restraining too early and we are letting our muscles weaken prematurely and we deprive ourselves of a better quality of life. Begin to restrain too late and we risk suffering an accidental fall.

I am of the opinion that seniors should persist for as long as they can. Continue to exercise and use our muscles as long as we can. But, always take the necessary precautions.

I am 73 now. Let me share my experience in this matter. When changing or wearing trousers standing up, I make sure my back is against a wall to prevent a backward fall that may hurt.

When going up or down a staircase, I make sure to hold on to the railing. And, I do not distract myself by using a handphone or reading the newspapers when going up or down the staircase.

When I need to climb up a ladder, I make sure the ladder is made of solid material and is standing on level ground. Additionally, I may have someone to hold the ladder for me.

These and many other safety measures we need to know and practise. French author Jules Renard famously wrote, "It is not how old you are. It's how you are old." Do not let yourself age before your time!


Seremban, Negri Sembilan

The views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect those of the New Straits Times

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