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11 Chair Exercises Seniors Should Try Out

11 Chair Exercises Seniors Should Try Out

Exercise is something we should do regardless of our age, even if we are over 65 years old. However, not all seniors have the mobility that will allow them to work out effectively. This is why it is necessary to find exercises they can perform, like chair or sitting exercises. Sitting exercises help seniors to stay active without putting much strain on them. Here are 11 exercises to check out. 

  1. Seated Shoulder Press

This is one of the best chair exercises for seniors as it helps them to stretch their hands upwards with better mobility. To do this, simply pick a lightweight dumbbell pair and lift them upwards as you sit and keep the core tight.

  1. Seated Front Shoulder Raises

This exercise is great for seniors suffering from arthritis, as it helps them better extend their arms forward. To do this, pick lightweight dumbbells, sit down, and lift your arms forwards while keeping the core tight.

  1. Seated Chest Press

This exercise works both shoulder and chest muscles. It is simple to do this; simply pick a resistance band and secure it to the chair’s back. Placing the elbow bent and parallel to the shoulder, push the band forward, stretching out your arm.

  1. Knee-to-Chest

This core exercise enables better use of the core muscles. To do this, sit at the edge of a chair while keeping the back straight, core tight, and chest stuck out. Keep the feet outwards before pulling the knees back in towards the chest.

  1. Extended Leg Raises

Get into a similar position as the previous exercise. This time, raise one leg at a time to maximum height before gently lowering it.

  1. Leg Kicks

Get into the same position as the knee-to-chest exercise. This time, grip the sides of the chair. Now, lift one leg at a time like extended leg raises without going beyond the centre of the body and bring it down gently.

  1. Sit-to-Stands

Also known as chair squats, this exercise works the best after knee surgery. To do this, sit at the edge of the chair, toes pointing forward, and slowly stand up from the chair. 

  1. Modified Squats

This one is also a squat but with more assistance. Place a chair in front of you with its back towards you. Extend your hands forward, aligning with the chair so that when you lower, the hands touch the chair.

  1. Neck Turns

This stretch helps with a stiff neck, a common occurrence in seniors. Sit straight on a chair, back firmly against the backrest. Slowly rotate your head to either left or right, hold the position for 20-30 seconds before returning to the original position.

  1. Seated Backbend

A seated backbend stretches the back muscles, a perfect solution for backaches and tightness in the back or neck. Sit at the edge of the seat, place your hand at the hips, and bend the back inwards. Hold the position for 10-20 seconds before returning to the original posture.

  1. Seated Overhead Stretch

Get into the position of the previous stretch. This time, raise the hand upwards from the hips and lock the hands at the top before bending the back inwards. Hold this position for 10-20 seconds before returning to your original posture—repeat based on your comfort.


Exercising keeps us active and helps us lead a healthy life. However, seniors have mobility problems that may be stopping them from exercising as much as they want or need to. With the simple chair exercises listed above, staying active won’t be a challenge for them.

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