As of last Tuesday (March 20), spring has officially sprung—although the recent snow storms in the Midwest and East Coast might make you think otherwise. However, once the weather finally warms up, there’s no better time for seniors to get out and enjoy the great outdoors.

Not only do spring activities provide some exercise and allow you to spend quality time with your loved ones, they give you the opportunity to soak up Vitamin D from the sun’s rays, which has been shown to have many positive effects.

According to U.S. News & World Report,  “the ‘sunshine vitamin’ may protect against a host of diseases, including osteoporosis, heart disease, and cancers of the breast, prostate, and colon. What’s more, sunlight has other hidden benefits—like protecting against depression, insomnia, and an overactive immune system.”

So grab your hat (and maybe a light windbreaker) and let’s get out there!

Two Green Thumbs Up

Gardening is a fun, hands-on activity that keeps growing beyond spring and into the summer. Of course, you can start by planting small plants if you prefer but starting from seeds is more affordable and offers more options. Planting seedlings inside and then transferring them outside provides strong roots and can help improve results.

Gardening is an activity that can be contained to pots and flower boxes or expanded into a full gardening operation with rows upon rows of your favorite flavors and colors. As an added bonus, you can enjoy fresh flowers, fruits and vegetables on your table all summer long.

Take a Hike—or a Stroll

Exercise and fresh air make a great combination for everyone, including seniors. Depending on your level of adventure and mobility, there are many senior-friendly and accessible trails in the Midwest. You can find a variety of maps and resources online, including some that offer listings of nearby wheelchair-accessible trails.

Be a Part of the Community Events

 As we move into spring and into summer, there are countless community events that you can add to your senior’s social calendar. From free concerts in the park to art fairs to flea markets, this is a chance for seniors to get out and enjoy a little exercise and interact with people of all ages.

Show Your (Local) School Spirit

School plays and sporting events (whether it’s at the nearby high school or college) are another hidden, often-overlooked activity. It’s not only affordable entertainment, it helps support the organizations in your community. Check out the websites of the schools in your community for a complete calendar of events.

These ideas are just a starting point. You know your loved one better than anyone else, so don’t hesitate to ask them what they would like to do. You may not agree on everything, but the most important thing is to spend time together to create new memories (or rekindle old memories).

American Senior Communities believes in providing active, whole-person care for all seniors. And we offer a host of lifestyle and care options, from garden homes and independent living apartments to rehabilitation and skilled nursing. Contact us today to learn more or schedule a tour.

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