Exercise is for everyone and for people of every age. When you are young, you have the chance to avoid it at times but with age avoiding it is like inviting problems.
The older you are, the weaker your body gets, and this is because, after the age of 30, people tend to lose lean tissue of muscles, liver, kidneys, and many other organs.
This is how you lose strength. And if you are an older person and love playing Pickleball, you should practice some common pre-Pickleball exercises before starting to play Pickleball.
There are some specific exercises that are slightly different from regular exercise for young adults and can help seniors to improve their ability to play better in Pickleball.
And before mentioning the exercises and how to do those exercises, let me tell you, Pickleball exercise not just improves your strength and agility and also removes pains that can follow after a long session of Pickleball playing.
The followings are the specific exercise you can do as a senior person before playing pickleball.
Stretching and movement exercises before Pickleball playing:
High knee stretching:
For doing a high knee, you have to select an open space and start doing a high knee every three steps.
First, start with a parade-style forward walk; take only three steps, and raise your right knee as high as possible without falling down.
Make sure you feel the stretch in your hips, quadriceps, and calves.
And repeat the same three steps forward, walk and raise your left knee as high as possible. Usually, your knees should go above your hips line.
This exercise Improves muscular endurance and balance, and coordination of the muscles.
It is a good warm-up exercise, and the Butt kick improves the cardiovascular system and boosts muscle strength.
To do butt kicks, start with slowly bringing your left foot heel to your buttocks by contracting hamstring muscles.
And after the left heel butt kick, put the foot down and repeat the same thing with the right foot heel. Do this exercise for at least 30 seconds.
Side thigh lean:
It is a good dynamic stretching for abductor strain prevention.
For doing this exercise, first standstill on the ground and put your feet at least 2 feet apart from each other.
Then slightly bend your knees and get a squat position and then bend your right knee and lean your body on the right knee side. While doing this, you have to make sure your left leg is straight.
You have to do the same thing on the left knee side too. Do this exercise for 30 seconds at the initial stage; you can increase its duration slowly each day.
This exercise will improve power in your forearms to increase control of your shots.
And it will also increase the grip and shoulder strength to have better power or control.
Besides, if you do this exercise just before you start playing Pickleball, it will reduce the chance of injuries from overuse of the elbow.
For doing this exercise, first, hold a towel (rolled out) in front of you with your two hands apart from each other.
Now use your left-hand wrist to twist the already rolled towel in the same direction it is already rolled.
Make sure you are using your wrist strength, not shoulder strength. And while doing it, also make sure your right hand and wrist are not moving or twisting at all.
And now follow the same thing for your right hand.
Standing hip abduction:
This Pickleball exercise is important to increase strength in hips for better agility and movement.
Standing hip abduction is also important for better balance so you can reach for difficult shorts. This exercise increases power in long-range shots.
Doing this exercise reduce knee pain. For doing this exercise, you have to start by standing on a plain surface with your legs slightly bent.
Then lift your right leg right side and keep your toes pointed forward where your face is pointed.
Gently bring your leg down but do not touch the surface, and again lift the leg in the same way.
Follow this instruction for your left leg too.
You can also have a glance at out ” Knee exercises for Pickleball“
Shoulder External rotation:
This exercise helps seniors to improve strength in shoulder muscles for making overhead shots; it also improves stability in the shoulder and range of motion.
Besides, doing this exercise can prevent any tear in your rotator cuff.
For doing this exercise, take a towel roll and tuck it between your elbow and your rib cage, then take a threaded band and wrap it around your hand, then start external rotation with your closed fist and make sure it is touching your belly button.
While doing this, keep your elbow bent and towel in place as you are moving while doing the exercise.
Then repeat the process for your other hand.
This is another good exercise for seniors, especially who are male and strong enough to do pushups.
Scapula pushups increase the strength in the shoulder and the strength in the overhead muscles.
It keeps the body posture good and good motion in your scapula. For doing this exercise, put both hands on top of a counter/wall.
Then while your hands are on the counter, take a step back as if you are going to do pushups.
Now bend your elbows slightly outward. Now that you are in a position to start scapula pushups, move your chest toward the counter and squeeze your shoulder blades together.
Then push against the Counter/wall and follow the same thing again. This is how you can do scapula pushups.
Be careful while giving pushups, as you are not 25 anymore!
FAQ on Pickleball exercises for seniors:
How many days a week should I play Pickleball?
Depending on your health condition and how long you play Pickleball, it can vary.
But on average, a senior American citizen plays Pickleball five days a week.
You can go beyond this date and even play Pickleball every day if you are too addicted. But do not forget to do some warm-up exercises and other activities of the day.
Can a 70-year-old play Pickleball?
Yes, definitely can. Older adult people who play Pickleball have better reflexes and balance, and they tend to live independently longer than people who are old and don’t play Pickleball.
Is Pickleball an old person’s sport?
People of any age, from adults to old, can play Pickleball, but this game is specifically popular among older people.
And around 52% of people who play Pickleball on a regular basis are more than 55 years old. And Pickleball players are, on average, 38 years old.
So in the sense of popularity to age group, you can call Pickleball an older person sport.
How long should a senior person play Pickleball?
A typical Pickleball match lasts around 15-25 minutes. And so, in that sense, 3 matches can be played within an hour.
And a senior person can play 2 or 3 Pickleball matches in a day. It will be enough exercise for their body.
is 70 too old to play Pickleball?
No, age is just a number.
is Pickleball good exercise for seniors?
Yes, pickleball is a good exercise for seniors.
In the overall scenario, these stretching and movement exercises can help to increase the flexibility of your muscles and motions in your bones joints by increasing blood flow to the muscles.
And it is important because increased flexibility will improve your Pickleball playing performance and will also prevent sudden muscle-related injuries.
Moreover, these exercises can reduce existing pain joints of the knee, shoulder, back, and arms.