Seated Dumbbell Exercises for Seniors

October 19, 2021 8 min read

Seated Dumbbell Exercises for Seniors

As we grow older our bodies and our physical capabilities change, but that does not mean that you can’t maintain an active lifestyle as a senior.

We want to help you get moving with some simple and funseated dumbbell workouts for seniors. In this article, we’ll tell you the best exercises for you, and exactly how to do them.

Ourdumbbell workuts avoid excessive strain on the back, knees, or other joints because high impactcardio exercises with dumbbells are best avoided by seniors.  

Exercise can put you on the road to improved joint health, more independence, a healthier heart, and better bone density. It’s also sure to boost your mood and energy. 

Strengthening the upper and lower body will increase mobility and balance in older persons. With our exercises, you can safely strengthen your arms, legs, and core.

Here are some simple, effective, and safe seated dumbbell exercises for seniors that can be done in the comfort of your home. All you need are cast iron orrubber-coated dumbbells.  

Seated Dumbbell Exercises for Seniors

 

Seated Shoulder Press

Sit comfortably in your chair with your feet shoulder-width apart on the floor. Keep your back upright and sit back in the chair with your back firmly against the backrest. Keep your core tight.

Hold a dumbbell at shoulder height in each hand with your palms facing away from you. Your elbows should be spread out to the side of your body.

Stick your chest out and keep your abs engaged as you extend your arms to lift thedumbbellsover your head.

You can extend your arms fully, or until where you feel comfortable, but do not let your hands touch. Bring the dumbbells back down to the starting position with slow and controlled movement.

This is one rep. Seniors often struggle with shoulder pain, mobility issues and lifting heavy objects overhead. This exercise can help you strengthen your arms to make daily tasks easier.

Seated Bicep Curls

Seated Bicep Curls

Sit comfortably in your chair with your back straight and against the backrest. Keep your abs engaged throughout.

With a dumbbell in each hand, let your arms hang naturally next to your sides with your palms facing away from you.

Keep your elbows tucked to your sides as you bend your elbows and curl the dumbbells upward. The dumbbells should move from your sides to the front of your shoulders.

Slowly lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position with a controlled movement. This is one rep.

Strengthening your arms and increasing mobility in your joints and elbows is very important as you get older because this is necessary for many daily activities.

You can do this bicepworkout with dumbbells and barbells. If you feel comfortable using barbells, go for it.

Seated Russian Twist

You can do this total coreexercise with one dumbbell. It strengthens the core and obliques. It also helps to stretch the spine for mobility and better balance.

Sit in your chair with your bum close to the edge of the seat. Lean back slightly to where you are comfortable and keep your core engaged.

Hold a dumbbell in both hands in front of your tummy. Lift it away from your tummy slightly and hold it there as you rotate and twist your upper body from side to side.

One full rotation is one rep.

Russian twists can also be a greatdumbbell stability ball workout. If you feel strong and comfortable enough to ditch the chair, you can do Russian twists on a stability ball to make your abs feel the burn.

Overhead Tricep Extensions

dumbbell exercises for seniors

When it comes to seated dumbbell exercises for seniors, this move is best left to those who have adequate shoulder motion.  To be safe, avoid using heavy weights for thislight dumbbell workout.

Grab one dumbbell and sit upright in your chair as far back as possible. Make sure that your back is supported by the backrest, and keep your core engaged.

Extend your arms and lift the dumbbell overhead with your elbows pointing forward and your palms facing the roof. This is the starting position.

Bend your arms at the elbow and squeeze your triceps so that the dumbbell is lowered down behind your head. Return to the starting position. This is one rep.

This move targets most parts of your triceps and also activates your shoulders and core. It can also increase mobility in the elbows.

Chair Squats with Dumbbells

dumbbell exercises for seniors

Chair squats are the perfect way for seniors to shape their hamstrings, glutes, and quads while removing some pressure from the back and knees.

Strong legs help to increase balance and stability, which is very important for older persons who want to increase mobility.

It is also one of the safestdumbbell exercises for cyclists who want to take the strain off their knees while doing squats.

With a dumbbell in each hand, sit comfortably on your chair with your buttocks close to the edge of the seat. Let your arms and the dumbbells hang naturally next to your sides.

Keep your feet shoulder-width or slightly further apart on the floor. Your toes should be pointing forward or slightly outward. Make sure to keep your abs tight for the best form during the entire exercise.

Slowly raise until you are in a standing position. Keep the dumbbells hanging naturally to your sides.

The secret is to push up from your chair with your bum and your hips instead of your knees. Squeeze the buttocks together as you stand up.

Sit back down in your starting position. This is one rep.

If you have limited strength or are new to this exercise, it might be a good idea to start out using your own body weight. Then, you can incorporate dumbbells when it feels safe and comfortable.

Seated Dumbbell Rows

seated dumbbell exercises for seniors

Seated dumbbell rows strengthen the upper body by targeting the back, shoulders, and arms.

Sit in your chair with a dumbbell in each hand. Your feet should be planted shoulder-width apart on the floor.

While keeping your back straight and core engaged, bend at the hips to lean forward slightly. Let the dumbbells hang naturally to your sides with your palms facing each other.

When you are bent over, stick to what is comfortable within your range of motion. You should be able to look over your knees with your head directly over your feet.

Keep your elbows close to your sides as you pull the dumbbells upward until your upper arms are nearly parallel to the floor. The secret is to squeeze your shoulder blades together.

With slow and controlled movements, lower the dumbbells down again to the starting position. This is one rep.

Seated Tricep Kickbacks

Seated tricep kickbacks target your triceps, shoulders and upper back to give you better upper body strength. They require a similar form to dumbbell rows, but with a different arm movement.

Sit in your chair with a dumbbell in each hand and your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend at the hips to lean forward and bring your chest towards your thighs.

Keep your back straight and your core engaged.  Bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle and keep your upper arms next to and hugging your sides. This is the starting position.

While keeping your upper arms in the same position hugging your sides, push the dumbbells back by extending and straightening your arm. With slow and controlled movements, return to the starting position.

Try to squeeze your triceps and shoulder blades, and make sure your back is straight.  

This move primarily targets the triceps. Strong triceps stabilize your shoulder joints to increase mobility for most everyday activities.  

Alternating Seated Leg Lifts

This move is a safe way to strengthen your quads and hamstrings without strain on your knees or back. It also increases mobility in the hip flexors, which in turn can relieve lower back pain.

Sit upright on your chair with your back supported by the backrest. Keep your knees bent 90 degrees.

Bring the dumbbells to your thighs and let them rest there to create resistance for the exercise. Hold them there with your hands throughout the exercise.

Keep your knees bent 90 degrees as you lift one leg at a time. Bring your thigh as close to your body as you feel comfortable with.

Release your leg and lower it to the ground in a controlled movement. Do the same with your other leg, and alternate legs after each rep.

Remember to keep your tummy tight and your back straight throughout the move.

Leaned Back Dumbbell Raise

You only need one dumbbell for the leaned back dumbbell raise. This functional, yet safe move strengthens the core and arms.

Hold the dumbbell with both hands in front of your chest and under your chin. Move your buttocks closer to the edge of the seat and lean back in the chair.

In this leaned back position, press the dumbbell upward by extending your arms. Bring it back down to the starting position with slow and controlled movements.

Remember to keep your abs tight and your back straight throughout this exercise.

Seated Dumbbell Sit-Up

Sit-ups target your abs and lower back, which promotes good posture and core strength.

Move your buttocks forward on the chair and closer to the edge of the seat. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart on the floor and lean back until your back touches the chair.

Hold a dumbbell in both hands under your chin and in front of your chest. Keep your back straight and your abs engaged at all times.

Now gently do a sit-up until you are sitting upright again in your seat. Lean back again, and repeat. Use slow and controlled movements for this exercise – squeeze your tummy.

This is a safedumbbell workout for beginners and seniors who want to ease into exercise that strengthens their abs.

Shoulder Rolls

seated dumbbell workouts for seniors

This exercise should be done with lighter weights, and it is meant to improve mobility in the shoulders. This is important for carrying and lifting objects.

Sit upright in your chair with your back supported by the backrest. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and flat on the floor.

Hold a dumbbell in each hand and let your arms hang naturally to your sides. Do a shrug and bring your shoulders up to your ears. Rotate your shoulders back, down, and forward again.

Reverse the movement when you complete one full shoulder rotation.

This exercise targets the traps, which are located on the sides of your neck. Strengthening your traps increases mobility in the shoulders, upper back, and neck.

Seated Lateral Raises

This move strengthens your shoulders and arms. Increasing strength in your shoulders also increases stability in your core.

It is also a greatdumbbell workout for women and beginners who want to tone their upper arms.

Hold a dumbbell in each hand and sit upright in your seat. Make sure that your back is straight against the backrest and your feet is shoulder-width apart on the floor.

Let the dumbbells hang naturally to your sides with your palms facing each other. Raise the dumbbells to the sides of your body until your arms and the floor are parallel.

Lower the dumbbells down to the starting position, and repeat. Remember to keep your elbows bent slightly, and your back straight. Movements should be slow and controlled. 

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