Best Ways to Stay Physically Active in Retirement

Seniors working out in the gym lifting weights

Retirement means stepping away from the workforce and not having to keep such a busy schedule of obligations. But that doesn’t mean your schedule should no longer be busy. Now, you can keep your calendar filled with activities you want to do, rather than ones you have to do. That’s a true reward after so many years of effort and responsibility.

The changes to your routine might mean that you need to make more of an effort to maintain social connections and keep moving. Fortunately, there are so many fun choices for physical activity that you’ll never have to wonder how to stay active in retirement.


According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, adults age 65 and older should get at least 2 ½ hours of moderate exercise per week to maintain good overall health. If you’re taking a 30-minute walk every day, you’re already ahead of the game! 

If you have a dog, you’re probably walking every day. If not, and you think you’d like a furry friend, you could consider adopting a dog. You’ll love the companionship, and you’ll have a new sense of purpose for getting your steps in every day. You might want to adopt an adult dog. Puppies have an abundance of energy, and need to be trained. An adult dog will be calm, trained, and happy to have a good home.


Swimming is one of the best exercises a person can do at any age. It uses almost every muscle in your body, can be medium intensity and has a very low risk of injury. If you have access to an indoor pool with proper safety measures in place, you can’t beat a good swim for maintaining your overall health.

Join a Gym

The weights, cardio machines and exercise classes at a local gym can be a great solution for how to stay active in retirement. You’ll have access to quality equipment, expert advice and plenty of help if you need it. You could try a yoga class. The combination of exercise, stretching and meditation has been proven to be healthy for centuries. And, any time you spend at a gym, in a class or out on the floor, will keep you staying active and making new social connections, which are so important for happiness and even cognitive function.


Getting outside and putting your hands in the soil can be a greatly satisfying hobby. You might be a veteran gardener already, but even if you’re new to the game, you might find it the perfect answer for how to stay active in retirement. The American Society for Horticultural Science says that gardening for 30 minutes per day is a perfect activity goal for older adults. And you’ll be rewarded with beautiful flowers or fresh veggies to enjoy and share!


There’s nothing better for your sense of purpose than to spend time helping others. Volunteering is a great way to stay engaged in your community, meet new friends and hold yourself accountable to a routine. Your years of life experience are a priceless gift you can share, and the benefits to your physical health and cognitive function are well documented. 

If you’re wondering how to stay active in retirement in ways that are both physically and emotionally satisfying, then give back.

Try Something New

Retirement isn’t the end of your active life. In many ways, it’s really a new beginning. Now you have time. Think about any hobbies you may have started earlier in life, or interests you may have that you had to put aside for your career and family. Now’s the time to explore any sort of crafting or artistic endeavor you’ve wondered about in the past, whether it’s a musical instrument, a writing class or any other new activity. 

More and more older adults are attending college classes and online seminars. You could get caught up with technology in a computer class. What about a foreign language? The benefits of these fun challenges to your cognitive function and overall health are matched only by the sense of purpose and satisfaction you’ll feel by taking steps to be a life-long learner.


This might sound like the opposite of being active, but if you want to know how to stay active in retirement, the secret is to get enough rest. All these new hobbies, exercise and social events are going to leave you tired at the end of the day. Getting proper rest is the key to keeping up your new active pace for the long run. Your body will heal and rejuvenate, your immune system and heart health will benefit, and you’ll be alert and ready for action tomorrow.

Active Independence at Sedgebrook

With no more chores, no more mortgage, no more career worries, it’s time to feel the true independence you’ve earned from your decades of hard work and dedication. Now, your schedule is your own. At Sedgebrook, we have activities, clubs, a creative arts studio, a computer lab and more. There’s even a 24-hour fitness center and aquatics center with a  pool and hot tub that’s there for you whenever you want it.

At Sedgebrook, we know how to stay active in retirement. We know what real freedom and independence can look like for you. If you want to find out more, contact us. We’d love to meet you.