Activities of Daily Living

Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) - Heritage Creek Assisted Living

The activities of daily living, or ADLs, are self-care tasks. These tasks are:

  • Self-feeding
  • Bathing and showering
  • Dressing
  • Functional mobility, or the ability to walk, get in and out of bed, and in and out of a chair
  • Toileting
  • Continence

It goes without saying that we all want to be able to do these tasks as long as possible. It is not true that frailty is an inevitable part of aging. Frailty is the result of inactivity. Exercise is the magic pill that will keep us enjoying the activities of life that are important to us. Certain types of exercise can target ADLs. Your exercise program should include these exercises, especially after age 62 when age related slowing typically begins. But it is never too late to begin! The ADLs have been broken down into the following movement patterns:

  • Push
  • Pull
  • Rotate
  • Bend at the hips
  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Brace (hold still) and balance
  • Pelvic floor exercises
Push And Pull Forces Clipart - Png Download (#1828557) - PinClipart

Push. We push a grocery cart or a stroller. We push the door shut. We push away from the table when we are finished eating. We push when we use our arms to get up from any position. We push our arms into the sleeves when we get dressed. Exercises that involve pushing include the chest press machine in the gym, dribbling a basketball, and push ups. If the traditional push ups on the floor are too difficult, place your hands on a sturdy bench or couch to perform incline push ups, or try standing push ups against a wall or counter top. In a water fitness class any action where the arm moves against the water in any direction away from the body is a push. A chest press toward the pool floor can be performed in a lunge position using buoyant dumbbells. An incline push up can be performed using a noodle.

Pulling Weeds Clipart - Pulling Weeds Gif - Free Transparent PNG Clipart  Images Download

Pull. We pull weeds. We pull a wagon. We pull the car door shut. We pull when we pick something off the floor. We pull laundry out of the washing machine. We pull clothes out of the closet. Exercises that involve pulling include the rowing machine in the gym, biceps curls with weights, and pulling resistance bands. Wrap the band around a banister or sit on the floor with the band around the bottom of your shoes and pull the ends. In a water fitness class any action where the arm moves the water towards the body is a pull. Jogging arms with cupped hands and jumping jacks with the arms moving toward the midline are examples. You can row with drag equipment, such as paddles or Aqualogix bells.

Image result for Throwing Ball to Dog Clip Art | Dog clip art, Dog vector,  She dog

Rotate. Any throwing or hitting action requires torso and arm rotation. Walking and running involve torso rotation. We rotate to look behind us when we are backing the car out of the parking space, and we rotate to get out of the car. An exercise that involves rotation is to sit in a chair with both hands on one hip and then turn to look over your shoulder. Limit the range of motion if you have osteoporosis. A stretching routine called Controlled Articular Rotations (CARs) uses rotation to improve mobility. To find out more, see Dr. Larissa Armstrong-Kager’s YouTube videos. In a water fitness class you can increase the intensity of a cross-country ski or a high kick by rotating the upper body with the arm swing. Crossing the midline of the body with the arms and crossover kicks involve rotation.

Bend at the Hips. We bend at the hips when we pick something small up off the floor. We bend when we tie our shoes. We bend when we put our pet’s food on the floor. We bend when we towel off after a shower. An exercise that involves bending is a deadlift. With weights in your hands and arms down, bend forward from your hips keeping your back straight and bending your knees slightly; then return to an upright position. We also bend at the hips when doing a hamstring stretch. In a water fitness class we bend at the hips during the up action of a straight leg front kick and during the down action of a straight leg back kick. We also bend from the hips when performing suspended exercises in shallow water, and when performing exercises in the “L” position in deep water.

Squat. We squat every time we sit down in a chair, or on the toilet. The best way to lift something heavy off the floor is to squat and grab the item with both hands and then stand up using the legs. Squats are functional exercises. Stand with your chest lifted and shift your weight to your heels as you lower your hips, as if sitting in a chair. Try not to let your knees go forward past your toes. Then push through your heels to return to standing. Another version of squatting is to sit down in a chair and stand back up again. In water fitness squats do not work the same muscles because the water’s buoyancy makes it easy to return to standing. Standing on an aquatic step so that more of your body is above the water makes the squat more effective. You can work the same muscles with rebounding moves that involving jumping with both feet, such as a tuck jump, a jumping jack and a cross-country ski.

Library of graphic black and white stock vacumming png files ▻▻▻ Clipart Art  2019

Lunge. You lunge when you step in any direction, or transfer weight from one leg to the other. Walking and running involves lunging. You lunge when you vacuum the floor. To perform a lunge exercise, take a big step forward with your hands on your hips, and slowly lower your body. Make sure that your front knee does not extend past your toes. If your knees bother you on the lunge, you can lean forward slightly from the waist to reduce the stress on the joints. Press through your heel to bring your front foot back to the starting position. If the lunge is too difficult, take a smaller step forward, or don’t bend your knees as far. You can place one hand on a wall or chair to help you balance. In a water fitness class you work the same muscles by jogging, kicking side to side and doing a rocking horse.

14 Exercises for Seniors to Improve Strength and Balance | Philips Lifeline

Brace (hold still) and Balance. Bracing involves contracting the core muscles to maintain a position. It is important in maintaining balance. The ability to balance greatly reduces the risk of falling. For exercises to improve balance, see my previous Blog post Balance Training at Home. Many of these same exercises can be performed in the pool as well. Another pool balance exercise is the Yoga plank while holding a noodle in the hands under the shoulders.

Pelvic floor exercises. Incontinence is often a problem as we age and the solution is pelvic floor exercise. These used to be called Kegels, but research has changed the way the exercises are done. Keep your shoulders relaxed and breathe normally as you smoothly raise your pelvic floor. Hold for 10 seconds then relax for 30 seconds before performing the next pelvic floor exercise; repeat up to 10 times. Or do 10 quick pelvic floor exercises in succession. For a more detailed description of pelvic floor exercise, see my Blog post Keep Your Inner Core Strong. Pelvic floor exercises can be done in a water fitness class as well as at home.

There is a Functional Core Strength lesson plan and a Balance lesson plan for shallow water as well as a Functional Core Strength lesson plan and a Balance lesson plan for deep water in my book Water Fitness Progressions. The lesson plans demonstrate options for teaching a class focusing on maintaining the ability to perform ADLs. To order the book, click on the link. Many pools are getting ready to reopen following closures because of COVID-19. I hope to see you in the pool soon!

Chris Alexander

Chris Alexander

63 Comments

  1. I would love to perpetually get updated on outstanding web blog!

    Reply: You can get updates by typing your email address in the sidebar to the right of the home page or at the bottom of a recent post and clicking follow.

  2. I’m really enjoying the design and layout of your blog. It’s a very easy on the eyes which makes
    it much more enjoyable for me to come here and visit more often.
    Did you hire out a designer to create your theme? Outstanding work!

    Reply: I have a web designer. He does great work! Thanks!

  3. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d most certainly donate to
    this fantastic blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your
    RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to brand new updates and will talk about this blog with my Facebook group.
    Talk soon!

  4. Hmm it seems like your blog ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll
    just sum it up what I wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying
    your blog. I too am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to the whole thing.
    Do you have any points for first-time blog writers? I’d certainly appreciate it.

    Visit my website Green Estates CBD Oil Price

    Reply: Just keep writing and good luck!

  5. Hello there, I am so delighted I found your webpage, I
    really found you by error, while I was researching on Aol for
    something else. Nonetheless I am here now and would just like to say cheers for
    a remarkable post and an all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design). I don’t have
    time to look over it all at the moment but I have book-marked it and also included
    your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read much more.
    Please do keep up the superb job.

  6. Hi I am so glad I found your web site, I really found you by mistake, while I was looking on Bing for something else. Regardless
    I am here now and would just like to say thanks for a fantastic
    post and an all around thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to
    look over it all at the moment but I have bookmarked it
    and also added your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more. Please do
    keep up the awesome blog.

  7. I am extremely inspired with your writing skills as with the layout in your weblog. Is that this a paid
    subject or did you modify it yourself? Either way keep up the excellent high quality writing, it’s uncommon to
    see a great blog like this one today..

  8. Wonderful work! That is the kind of info that are supposed to be shared across the
    web. Shame on the search engines for now not positioning this post
    higher! Come on over and consult with my site . Thanks =)

  9. Hi there! I could have sworn I’ve been to this site before but after checking through some
    of the post I realized it’s new to me. Anyways, I’m definitely delighted I found it and I’ll be book-marking and checking back frequently!

  10. Sweet blog! I found it while browsing on Yahoo
    News. Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there!

    Thanks.

    Reply: Sorry, I don’t know how to get on Yahoo News. But thanks for the compliment!

  11. Does your website have a contact page? I’m having a
    tough time locating it but, I’d like to send you
    an email. I’ve got some recommendations for your blog you might
    be interested in hearing. Either way, great blog and I
    look forward to seeing it grow over time.

    Reply: At the top of the website is an “About” button. That takes you to a page with a “Contact” button at the top.

  12. Hey very cool blog!! Excellent .. Wonderful ..

    I’ll bookmark your blog and look for more feeds.

    Reply: You can type your email address in the sidebar to the right of my home page, or at the bottom of any recent post and click submit to get notified when a new post is published.

  13. Great site you have here but I was wondering if you knew of
    any community forums that cover the same topics discussed in this article?
    I’d really love to be a part of online community where I can get comments from other knowledgeable individuals that share
    the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.
    Many thanks!

  14. Hmm it appears like your website ate my first comment (it was extremely long)
    so I guess I’ll just sum up what I submitted and
    say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I
    am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to everything.
    Do you have any tips and hints for novice blog writers?
    I’d certainly appreciate it.

    Reply: Comments disappear until I approve them. Just keep writing. Good luck with your blog!

  15. I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you make this
    website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?

    Plz respond as I’m looking to create my own blog and would like to
    find out where u got this from. thank you.

    Reply: I have tech support who designed my blog site. Thanks for the compliment!

  16. I really like your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you create this
    website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?
    Plz reply as I’m looking to construct my own blog and would like to find out where u got this from.
    kudos.

    Reply: I have tech support that designed my site. Thanks!

  17. My spouse and I stumbled over here from a different website and thought I should check things
    out. I like what I see so now I’m following you. Look forward to looking
    at your web page for a second time.

  18. Woah! I’m really loving the template/theme of this site.
    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s
    very hard to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appeal.
    I must say you have done a great job with this.

    In addition, the blog loads very fast for me on Firefox.
    Superb Blog!

  19. Howdy, I read your blog from time to time and I own a similar
    one. I was just curious if you get a lot of spam remarks?
    If so how do you prevent it, any plugin or anything
    you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me mad so any support is very much appreciated.

    Reply: Jetpack has as Spam blocker.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *