Summer is a great time to get outdoors and enjoy all that nature has to offer.
During warmer months, residents are engaged in as many outdoor activities as we can allowing them to enjoy the sunshine and nice weather. We want residents to enjoy all aspects of being outside whether it’s on our deck, in our fenced in backyard or out on a summer outing.
Active residents who are able to be up, out, and walking, have the opportunity to be out in the garden. We love their help watering plants and grass, filling the bird feeders, and picking herbs and vegetables from the gardens.
Residents enjoy golf cart rides, pontoon rides and fishing on a lake, going to the farmers markets, 4th of July parade, music and picnics in the park, car rides, ice cream trips, barbecuing in the back yard and so much more. It is great to see residents enjoy the time they spend outside in the summer months.
“My top favorite summer activities to do with the residents are going to the farmer’s market, pontoon rides on the lake, and taking them on golf cart rides,” said Kaite Rinehimer, Quality of Life Director.
Outings are scheduled for at least once a week and outdoor activities we try to do as often as we can during the week – weather permitting. Activities and outings are truly about connecting our residents with things they love and enjoyed doing in the past. It’s amazing what going on an outing or participating in an outside activity can really do for a resident. Even just spending time outside in our luscious green backyards enjoying the gardens and patios is great.
“I also love sitting with lemonade and watching the cars go by, picking flowers from the gardens and arranging them, enjoying a beer with the fellas when we barbecue, and watching the Twins,” added Rinehimer.
Summer is really the time to get out and enjoy life.
Benefits of Being Outdoors
According to a recent study done by the University of Minnesota, tilted “Therapeutic Landscapes and Well-being in Later Life: Impacts of blue and green spaces for older adults,” the benefits of spending time outside are infinite.
“We zoomed in to everyday life for seniors between the ages of 65 and 86. We discovered how a relatively mundane experience, such as hearing the sound of water or a bee buzzing among flowers, can have a tremendous impact on overall health,” says Jessica Finlay, research assistant on the project and lead author of the research paper.
Natural environments promote quality of later life by decreasing boredom, isolation, and loneliness. Having activities that allow residents the opportunity to spend time outside increases one’s sense of purpose and accomplishment.
- Tips for healthy aging:
- Focus on overall well-being: mental and social health are just as important as physical again
- Get out the door regularly, even if it’s just to the end of the block and back or just sitting outside in your backyard
- Prioritize contact with nature on a daily basis – whether it’s sitting in a park, listening to a water fountain, or looking at potted plants on a windowsill
Safety Tips for Seniors Outdoors
While having fun and enjoying time outside, it is crucial to take precautions to make sure seniors are safe outdoors. The older you are the more prone to over overexposure from the sun. Elderly heat stroke and heat exhaustion are a real problem and can come on fast.
There are several reasons for elderly heat vulnerability. People’s ability to notice changes in their body temperature decreases with age and those living with memory loss simply can’t. Many seniors also have underlying health conditions that make them less able to adapt to heat. Many medications that seniors take can contribute to dehydration.
View our guide on safety tips for seniors outside. We encourage all caregivers to review this before taking our residents outside. It never hurts to be more informed and extra cautious.
We want to hear from you:
We are always looking for ideas on different outings or activities to do with our residents. Please share any ideas you have or connect us with a business or organization you think we would benefit from working with. We would love to hear!