As we age, our body systems no longer work the same way. Muscle wasting is a common problem that increases your risk of falling and reduces our quality of life.
This is why it’s extremely important to continue exercising as we grow older.
But of course, with appropriate exercises and the right equipment.
Should you be in any doubt any exercise, I would advise you to speak with your physician or physiotherapist.
To get you motivated and moving, below you will find my list of recommended gym equipment for all types of workouts.
Cardio exercises are extremely beneficial for seniors, as it’s been proven to reduce the risk of dementia, heart disease, diabetes, and other health problems.
However, since it’s not always safe for seniors to perform cardio exercises in outdoor sports, having cardio equipment at home is a great alternative.
Cardio equipment provides excellent support for aerobic exercises.
Before exercising, most seniors are probably worried about the risk of injury. That’s why ellipticals are highly recommended- because they’re very stable and safe.
Ellipticals are created to facilitate balance and support natural stride movements.
This is a unique mini exercise bike that allows you to choose whether you want to pedal with your legs or your arms.
It has a very visible LCD screen that is easy to use and shows the speed, time, and calories burned during your exercise.
It operates when connected to an electrical outlet, and you can slightly increase the resistance by turning off the motor assistance.
This Sunny Health model combines the movements of a typical elliptical with that of a stepper machine.
It includes oversized foot pedals for increased safety, it’s built with heavy-duty materials, it’s stable, and it has a weight capacity of 250 pounds.
Another great feature is that it won’t take much space in your room.
The twist stepper comes with adjustable handlebars, adjustable height, and a small but visible LCD monitor to track your exercise stats.
This is a low-impact cross trainer with pedaling movements and oversized pedals.
It is extremely fluid, silent, and has back support making it perfect for anyone with chronic back pain or spinal problems.
The position you adopt in this machine reduces the strain on your joints and delivers an excellent cardio exercise.
It also comes with a battery-powered console where you can track your progress and place your mobile device to stream your videos.
This elliptical has a similar design to the Exerpeutic model, except it is meant to be placed under your desk or coffee table, turning your living room or study into a workout space.
It’s suitable for seniors and comes with a resistance lever that adjusts the intensity of the workout. The machine is compact, silent, and uses an LCD screen to track your progress.
Additionally, it comes with a pair of resistance bands you can use to exercise your arms and upper body at the same time.
Recumbent Exercise Bikes
There are several types of indoor bikes, but recumbent bikes are definitely the most appropriate for seniors.
They come with convenient back support which allows you to exercise while comfortably sitting on a chair.
This reduces the strain in the articulations and the muscles of the back, turning biking into a low-impact cardio activity.
This model is an excellent recumbent bike, especially for seniors with some experience who want a bit of a challenge.
It has 20 levels of resistance and 22 preset programs to make cardio exercises more interesting.
You also get 2 LCD screen displays to easily track your fitness activity and goals according to the workout program you’re following.
The seat is fully adjustable and the pedals are not oversized but have security straps to prevent slipping, keeping your feet and legs safe throughout the exercise.
This is a simple and affordable recumbent bike that has everything you need to start your physical activity routine at home.
It has 8 levels of adjustable magnetic resistance, an adjustable seat with back support, non-slip pedals with straps, and a digital monitor to track your fitness activity.
It’s also very stable and resistant, with a maximum user weight of 350 pounds.
Another great feature is the integrated handlebars that move along with your feet, allowing for gentle upper body exercises that increase the effectiveness of your cardio workout.
Using treadmills for the first time is not always easy, especially as a senior.
That’s why treadmills for seniors are expected to have increased safety measures to prevent slipping or falling.
It is also important to reduce impact on your joints with a shock-absorption platform that reduces the strain on the knees and ankles.
This is a sturdy and resistant machine, with a maximum user weight of 400 pounds, and a 5-year motor warranty.
It allows you to adjust your speed up to 4 MPH in 0.1 MPH increments and has an LCD display to track your activity.
However, the best feature is the extra-long safety handles, which makes it more appropriate for seniors.
This treadmill is also foldable into a flat mode so you can easily store it almost anywhere.
Unlike many others, this model is a manual treadmill, meaning it’s not motorized and you yourself will move the belt by applying gentle pressure on it.
The machine is extremely compact and lightweight, with a non-slip surface that supports up to 220 pounds of user weight.
It features an LCD monitor with a single button to switch it on and off, and it is a suitable model for seniors because it stops when you stop.
This reduces the risk of slipping, tripping, or feeling dizzy at the end of your workout.
Not all treadmills are specially designed for seniors and rehabilitation but that is not the case with this one.
This is probably the best treadmill for seniors because it was designed with them in mind.
It is motorized but has a slow starting speed that is appropriate for seniors and those in rehab.
It also has very long safety handles, 12 workout programs, and the possibility to change the inclination up to 15% with 1% increments.
These machines are excellent for back exercises, but the majority are designed with an athletic user in mind.
Most seniors are looking for a low-impact exercise that is mostly safe and easy on the joints.
Finding the appropriate rowing equipment allows seniors to exercise while sitting comfortably and without the risk of slipping and falling.
With a silent magnetic resistance and 14 levels of intensity, this machine is fantastic, not only for rowing but also tricep extensions, front raises, and other upper body exercises.
The fitness reality magnetic rower comes with an extra-large handlebar and a large cushioned seat that is 13.5×1” in size.
It has its own LCD display, but you can also track your workouts and motivate yourself with a digital fitness experience in their Smart Cloud Fitness app.
The Sunny Health & Fitness water rowing machine is an interesting choice.
It has a maximum user weight of 300 pounds and features water resistance instead of magnetic resistance. This creates an interesting workout experience that is very similar to the actual sport.
It is not as expensive as you’d expect and provides a safe experience for seniors with a 12×10” seat and a slide rail of 38”.
Resistance Training Equipment
You’re likely not interested in bodybuilding, but resistance training exercises are essential for maintaining muscle mass and prevent disability.
Resistance training equipment helps you build muscle, preserve bone density, prevent osteoporosis.
It also assists in preventing several chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis.
Given all of these benefits, many seniors engage in strength training along with cardio, and these machines can be very useful for them.
Building strength at home requires two essential features.
The machine should be comfortable and safe plus it should fit in the space you have available.
Here are some options to consider:
This is one of the best home gyms on the market.
It features an interesting power rod resistance technology instead of a weight stack, gives you up to 200 pounds of maximum resistance, and allows for 25 different upper and lower body exercises.
The multiple cable pulley positions and the multifunctional bench also allow you to train all of your body with a single device that doesn’t take excessive room space.
The Weider 2980 model offers a bit more resistance (214 pounds) and uses the classic stacked weight approach.
It is a 6-in-1 home gym that provides several ways to exercise your upper and lower body.
The machine requires assembly, but it’s not difficult, and the instructions are very clear.
This is a simpler approach that does not include weights, complicated bulky machines, or resistance settings.
It’s basically a chair with resistance rods you can attach and exercise without weights.
You can choose one of 50 exercises for your upper and lower body from the workout guide provided or simply follow the meal plan and exercise DVD that is also included in your purchase.
Using free weights is appropriate for older adults, as long as they are careful and make sure they are performing each exercise with the proper technique.
If they do so, they will engage in an excellent strengthening activity with multiple health benefits.
When exercising as a senior, you’re unlikely to need very large weights. That’s why we are recommending this weight rack with 3, 5, and 8-pound dumbells.
They have a neoprene coating and non-slip handles for increased safety and include different set options(up to 10 pounds) if you need more weight for your workouts.
The BalanceFrom GoFit All-Purpose Dumbbells also come in 3 pairs. The weights on these are also 3, 5, and 8 pounds.
The difference with this one is that it allows you to include up to 12 extra pounds if you want it to be more challenging.
The weight stand is included, and they are also coated with neoprene for a more secure grip.
There are many ways to get your share of resistance exercise and they don’t necessarily involve stacked weights and dumbbells.
You could also use resistance bands, which are a bit more appropriate for seniors and provide an excellent level of resistance, fitting to their needs.
Here’s a list of items to consider:
This resistance chair is specially designed with rehabilitation in mind.
The chair features a non-skid seat and the cable pack includes two pairs of resistance cables.
You can anchor the resistance cables in the chair and perform your exercises, as instructed in the free workout DVD included with your purchase.
Resistance bands are excellent and very versatile pieces of equipment for seniors.
This set comes with 5 resistance levels, from 10 to 50 pounds, and allows you to train different muscle groups if you know what to do with them.
To make it easier for you, a workout guide and a workout poster are both included in your purchase, as well as a door anchor, two ankle straps, and a carrying bag.
If you’re not interested in stretch bands with more than 25 pounds of resistance, this set will be more appropriate for you.
It has lower resistance levels, ranging from 5 pounds up to 25 pounds.
With this purchase, you will receive 5 tension bands (5-pound increments), a door anchor, two ankle straps, and your carrying bag.
Core Strength Equipment
Core strength exercises are probably the most important exercise for seniors.
The muscles of the core include the abdominal muscles and the back, but also the pelvic and hip muscles.
Together, they contribute to stabilizing and balancing the body.
Maintaining a strong core is extremely important and will help prevent falls, reduce the risk of injury, and improve your ability to perform everyday tasks.
There are various types of balance boards, and some of them can be dangerous for seniors because they are made for practicing sports such as skateboarding and surfing.
However, others are very suitable for rehabilitation and perfect if you only want to improve your balance. For example, these two models:
More than a balance board, this is a balance pad you place on the floor and stand on top of.
The surface of the pad has a non-slip texture and added cushioning to make it safer for seniors, and it is specifically designed for rehabilitation.
This is an extremely durable balance trainer. It is large and appropriate for a myriad of exercises.
You can actually do almost every bodyweight exercise on this board, with additional benefits for the core muscles.
Whether you’re an active senior or you want a device for rehab, this balance trainer will adapt to your needs.
Strengthening your abdominals involves more than having six-pack muscles to show off.
Strong abs are essential to maintain balance and to help seniors stand up and do important movements in their daily activities.
This core strengthening device comes fully assembled and ready to use. It targets the abdominal muscles, but you can also use them for bicep, tricep, and leg exercises.
You will get an online manual and a fitness guide to learn how to use it, and it also has a mobile app you can use along with the guide.
With this vibration plate, all you’ll need to do is stand on top of it in order to strengthen your abs and other core muscles.
You can adjust the speed of vibration from level 1 to 99, and it comes with loop bands and resistance bands to exercise your upper body along with your core.
This type of vibration is also excellent to increase bone density and reduce joint pain.
This is another option if you liked the Wonder Core model.
It has a similar design and allows you to strengthen your abdominal muscles, arms, and leg muscles with a low-impact exercise.
It also has a pair of resistance straps, and you can adjust the intensity of your workout by choosing one of three resistance levels.
The device comes fully assembled and ready to use.
Pool Exercise Equipment
Aquatic or pool exercise is a great low-impact activity that seniors can try.
It works amazingly for rehabilitation and can help you achieve adequate levels of physical activity without extra weight on your joints.
It’s beneficial for musculoskeletal health, especially to prevent osteoporosis plus it can improve balance and reduce the risk of elderly falls.
If you’re engaging in this type of activity, consider one of the items below:
It looks like a barbell, and under the water, it feels like a barbell.
This product is designed to make use of the natural properties of the water to create a uniform and smooth resistance that is easy on your joints.
You get a barbell, a pair of bells for your arms, and a pair of fins for your legs, making it the perfect companion for aquatic pool exercise.
The AquaJogger belt gives you an additional tool to perform an aquatic workout.
After wearing it, you can stay suspended in water, and perform your exercises without touching the floor.
The adjustable belt fits up to 48 inches, and it is great, not only for exercising but also for relaxing and floating on the water.
This is a simple aquatic exercise kit that allows you to get the best out of your pool activity.
It uses the natural resistance of the water and comes with a pair of cuffs and a pair of fins you can place on your arms and legs.
Performing exercises with these add-ons can improve the outcome and increase the health benefits of pool exercise.
These water weights are designed to resist submerging and cause a resistance you can use for your exercise.
It works by pushing the weights underwater in different body positions to target different muscle groups.
It comes in three colors, each with a different weight of 2.5, 4, and 6 pounds.
Stretching is an incredible exercise for seniors, which is why yoga and other modalities have acquired fame in this age range.
Stretching improves the flexibility of your joints and the elasticity of your muscles, preparing the musculoskeletal system for daily activities and preventing muscle decay.
We can perform flexibility exercises with our own bodyweight, but there are also excellent pieces of equipment we can use to maximize our home training.
With this stretch trainer, you get ergonomic pads, straps, and handles you can use to adopt different positions and perform your exercises.
It is very sturdy, with a maximum weight capacity of 250 pounds and a 5-year frame warranty.
If you don’t know where to start, you’ll also get an instructional placard with key exercises for different body parts.
This Bodyblade kit is a fun and interesting way to perform your stretching exercises and other forms of physical therapy.
It is suitable for rehab patients but also appropriate for more active individuals and comes with an exercise guide and DVD to help you make the best use of this device.
Similar to the Precor 240i model, this one is a stretch machine you can use to assist your flexibility workouts.
It has an adjustable seat, support bars, and an instructional board with different exercises for every body part.
Exercise balls like this are very versatile. It can be used for stretching exercises, but it also supports bodyweight exercises and balance training.
This kit is very interesting for beginners because it comes with an exercise ball, a stability base to prevent slipping when sitting, a pair of attachable resistance bands, a foot pump with a tape measurer, and an exercise poster.
If you only need a yoga mat for your stretching exercises, you may want to have a very long and wide surface to do your workouts.
This one is 6×4 feet which is more than enough not to feel restricted during your sessions.
It has a non-skid surface on both sides, and 7mm memory foam to provide sufficient cushioning and stability to your exercise.
Instead of having bulky equipment, some seniors would prefer to watch fitness videos and follow the movements of an instructor.
The benefit is that you can turn it on anytime you want without restrictions, and have a professional trainer giving you instructions for your exercise.
However, not all videos are appropriate for seniors.
This is a collection of what we consider the best:
This DVD system is designed for seniors who want to regain their strength and energy to improve their balance and their quality of life.
Included with your purchase are 5 DVDs with a set of resistance bands which is all you need in order to follow the exercises along with your instructor.
The exercises are fun and easy to follow, but always low-impact and appropriate for this age range.
Besides yoga, Tai-Chi is also an appropriate exercise for seniors.
It features deep breathing, balance exercises, and low-impact movements they can perform without a problem.
This DVD set includes two discs, and it is especially recorded for individuals over 50 years old.
Sitting is often related to sedentary behavior, but if you’re experiencing mobility problems you will be grateful to know that there are ways to perform exercises in your chair.
This set of DVDs includes 3 complete workouts designed to increase flexibility, leg strength, and circulation.
Running time is 81 minutes in total, and it is highly recommended for seniors who cannot move around too much.
This is probably the most appropriate DVD collection if you don’t like bodyweight exercises or cardio but enjoy dancing.
DVD 1 comes with 19 dance workout routines and DVD 2 has 13 bonus workouts to keep your body flexible while you enjoy the process of working out and being more active.