Winter offers a terrific opportunity to spend quality time with your family, including your seniors. Not only can winter activities provide fun and entertainment, they can also help keep seniors active and healthy during the colder months.
All seniors, including those in assisted living facilities, need to stay physically and mentally engaged. There are plenty of activities you can do together to keep them involved and entertained this winter.
The elder care professionals at Comfort Home Care in Rockville, MD, share a few ideas to help make the most out of winter with your senior.
You don’t have to stay cooped up indoors all day during the winter months. With proper clothing and precautions you can get out into the fresh air and get your daily dose of vitamin D. A few options to consider doing with your senior are a leisurely walk around the neighborhood, a nearby park, or a nature trail. You could expand upon the experience by going to a different park each week/month and incorporating bird watching. Taking pictures of the different birds you spot and then researching them when you get home helps keep your senior’s mind active.
Not only can you do research for your weekly walks together, but you can plan other indoor activities for those days that are either too cold or too wet. You can spend the afternoon in a museum or art gallery discussing the art and artists. You can immerse yourself in the storytelling of a play or movie. Or, if you prefer something more hands-on, consider trying out crafting classes like knitting, quilting, pottery, or painting.
Cooking classes are also popular with seniors. This can be especially fun if you choose recipes that represent cultural backgrounds, like Italian food from Grandma’s homeland! This is a perfect opportunity for your mother or aunt to share their mother’s most loved recipes. Creating your own cookbook of favorite recipes makes lifelong memories that will be cherished for generations.
Another inddor option is games. You can play board games like chess or checkers or various card games while enjoying hot cocoa.
Socializing with others is important for your senior’s mental health. You can invite friends over for lunch or dinner parties as well as game nights. You both can give your time working or organizing volunteer events at your assisted living facility, local shelter or local school. Joining a book club (or starting one) will keep your brain sharp while connecting with friends (and even making new ones). Make reservations for you and enjoy lunch at your senior’s favorite restaurant. The possibilities are endless for having fun with your senior during the wintertime.
Physical activity is just as critical in the wintertime as it is in the summertime. Yoga and Tai Chi are both excellent low-impact forms of exercise for seniors. If your senior isn’t quite that flexible or mobile, grab a chair and try chair exercises. There are a variety of classes on YouTube. What you choose to do isn’t that important…just get moving. Studies have proven that physical activity is important for all of us and even more so for our seniors.
No matter what type of activity you choose for yourself and your senior this winter season, don’t forget to have fun and make memories along the way. Whether it’s an outdoor adventure in nature or an indoor game night with friends and family, starting a book club, or getting in some cardio, there are plenty of great ways to keep everyone entertained during these winter months.
Get creative and enjoy quality time with those who matter most.