Winter isn’t quite over, but if you’ve been stuck in the house, feeling inert, there are plenty of activities to get your blood pumping and your body moving.
It’s especially important for our older citizens to get daily exercise and activity. On the most wintery of days, plan some physical activity inside your home. Try yoga or light weight-lifting. On the warmer days, pencil in a half-hour walk each day around your neighborhood or your community’s parks.
But winter can also be an isolating, lonely time for seniors. As winter flows toward spring and you’re craving some outdoor activity, why not reach out to friends to join you? Whether you’re hitting one of the trails or just heading for an afternoon jaunt in one of the towns in the area, make your exercise regimen a social activity. It’s a chance to get much-needed exercise, take in the sights and spend time with people who value your company.
Even better, this time of the year you can enjoy some of the best the Black Hills has to offer, long before tourist season kicks in. There are plenty of great trails and small town walkways scattered throughout the region.
Hill City offers a variety of good food, entertainment, scenery and the arts. If your passion is art and culture, this tiny city nestled in the heart of the Hills is a great place to spend a day, soaking up some of the best that our region’s artists and artisans have created. Check out the local galleries, like the Ben West. Or grab lunch at the Alpine Inn, or a snack and wine tasting at Prairie Berry.
Late winter and early spring can also be excellent times for bird-watching and nature photography. Grab your camera or binoculars and head to Canyon Lake Park or any of our nearby trails to capture some of the best of nature. Bring snacks and water and enjoy a walking lunch with friends or the grandkids.
Another way to enjoy the scenery, while getting in much-needed physical activity, is through volunteerism. Offer to walk a dog for a neighbor who is shut-in. Donate your time to veterans’ organizations in our community. Volunteer to help clean up our local parks and walkways. These are great ways to keep active, keep fit and help make our community better.
Of course, if you want to exercise indoors, there are many excellent gyms and fitness programs here in the Black Hills including the YMCA of Rapid City. But make your fitness part of a social plan – get outside at least once or twice a week, include your friends or family in your fitness plans and take in some of the sights around the beautiful Black Hills while you are on the move.
If you are above age 50, be sure to consult with your doctor and chiropractor on recommended exercise. We want to keep you limber and a healthy member of our community for a long time!