Leg Execrcises for the Elderly

One of the leading causes of injuries in senior individuals is falling, which usually sustains severe, even life-threatening injuries at times.

Weakness in your legs, as well as balance issues, are, in turn, one of the main reasons why as a senior, you may trip and fall so easily.

Besides those facts, many other health complications, such as back pain, joint pain, and immobility, can occur as you age.

With regular exercise, especially leg exercises, all these factors can be reduced, even eliminated.

Regular leg exercises for seniors will increase the strength in your legs, improve your balance, and also improve fitness, which in turn will aid with mobility.

Why do Seniors Need Leg Exercises

As a senior, we do not just recommend that you do leg exercises but also other forms of exercise that will improve your strength, balance, health, and mobility.

Exercise, in general, has so many benefits for your health and fitness as a senior. However, in this article, I want to concentrate particularly on leg exercises and how they will benefit you as a senior individual.

  • Reduces Risk of Falling – Regular leg exercises will most definitely reduce your risk of falling by at least 23%. Because you strengthen your legs and improve your balance with leg exercises, you are more stable on your feet and less likely to trip, slip and fall.
  • Counteracts Disease – In general, regular exercise can help counteract disease by improving the function of your brain and heart. In turn, this helps prevent heart conditions and conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
  • Better Mobility – When you are more fit and your legs are stronger, you are able to move around much easier and will feel that your body is much more mobile and flexible.
  • Weight Loss – Leg exercises will essentially also help you to lose those extra pounds, which could be hazardous to your health, causing issues such as leg, foot, and back pain.
  • Osteoarthritis – Osteoarthritis is one of the most common forms of arthritis found in seniors. It occurs when the cartilage protecting your bones start to wear out over time. By performing proper leg exercises and keeping weight off your joints, as well as with proper nutrition, you can slow this down or prevent the condition from occurring.

Leg Exercises for Seniors

So now that we have discussed all the good reasons why you need leg exercises as a senior, here are a few easy and effective leg exercises that you can perform at home to strengthen your legs and improve your balance.

I have included some videos to give you a clearer idea of how to perform the exercises;

Calf Raises

One of the best leg strengthening exercises for seniors is calf raises. To do them, you will need to stand straight, maybe holding on to a desk or wall to keep your balance. Now you rise on your toes as far as you can slowly and gradually and keep your heels off the ground. Hold for a while, and slowly, and gradually return your feet t their normal position.


Lunges can strengthen your lower back and legs and help to improve coordination. Stand up straight, keep your back straight. Step forward in one lunge and lower your hips. Stationary lunges are easier on your knees if you want to try that.

Half Squats

You can use a chair to complete a half squat. Hold the chair, and then bend both your knees as comfortably as possible, and then slowly return to a standing position.

Knee Extensions

.Knee extensions will help to improve your balance and your ability to stand properly. For this, your will need to sit in a chair, your back straight. Lift your right knee for a few seconds, and then alternate and lift your left knee. Repeat these steps around 12 to 15 times.

Ankle Circles

Ankle circles are ideal as a warm-up exercise. You can sit or stand to do this exercise, depending on your comfort and balance. Lift your leg off the floor and rotate your ankle around five to seven times, and do the same in the opposite direction, taking turns with each leg.

Step Up

To improve coordination and balance, step-ups are an excellent choice. You will need a high box or a step. Step up carefully with your left leg, hold and balance counting to three and then lower yourself down slowly. Do the same with your right leg. You may need something to hold don to for balance.

Walk Heel to Toe

A very easy leg exercise for balance. It would help if you walked forward, putting one foot in front of the other in a straight line. Heel touching the toes of the foot and keeping your weight on the help first.

Single Leg Stance

Also a great balance and coordination exercise. Stand with your feet together, arms at your sides, next to a chair. Lift your right hand above your head, and lift your right l foot as high as you can. Hold the position for 10 to 15 seconds. Now do the same on the other side.

Wall Push Ups

An excellent leg strengthening exercise. You can use the wall as a prop. Stand at an arm’s length from the wall and lean forward slightly. Place your palms flat on the wall at the widths and height of your shoulders. Push your body towards the wall and push yourself back again so that your arms are straight. Similar to push-ups but just uses a wall.

Marching in Place

Ideal for improving balance and is very easy. Stand straight and lift your left knee as high as you can, lower it down, and then lift your right knee. Repeat for around 20 to 25 times.

Chair Toe Lifts

Use a chair to do these exercises. Sit straight and place your arms in front of you, raise your legs onto your toes as high as you can and lower your legs gently.

Side Leg Raises

Take a chair and stand behind the chair with your feet slightly apart. Lift your one leg to the side as far as comfortable, keeping your back straight, and lower it again. Make sure your toe pints forward. Do this on each side for around 10 to 15 repetitions.

In Conclusion

If you perform some or even all of these leg exercises on a daily basis, or even just a few times a week, you should be well on your way to stronger and more balanced legs.

You will also feel more refreshed and energized, with more vitality for life.

About the Author

John Max

John is a certified fitness trainer, writer, and health enthusiast and has worked with people of all age groups. He understands the difference a right product makes towards the fitness and comfort of the elderly. He reads a lot of stuff on the internet to explore and stay updated with the latest advancements in technology for elderly people. John also regularly tests and analyzes the benefits and features of as many senior-specific products as possible. Without a surprise, many of our readers love his reviews and testing style for how thorough and straightforward they are.