For our final installment in the elderly workout series, we're doing a simple cooldown stretch: the assisted standing quad stretch. To do this stretch, you will need something to hold onto, like a walker or chair in front of you. You will also need a shorter stool with a pillow or padding on it to rest your bent leg on.
Sitting on the stool with the walker in front of you, you should stand up with your walker, and then slowly and carefully lift one of your legs up (bending at the knee, not at the hip) and rest it on the stool, using your arms on the walker to stabilize yourself. (See pictures below)
If you feel unstable while moving your leg up, simply keep it slightly off the ground for as long as you can and then put it back down to regain your balance. If you are worried about falling over, you should definitely have someone at the ready to catch you if you lose balance. Remember, we are trying to gain balance and stability with all of these exercises, so if you feel out of balance, back off and go with 80% effort.
Hold the stretch for 1-2 minutes on each leg, 3 times per day.
Happy Stretching! And a happy start to the Holiday season!
I have a seminar at Yang's Fitness Center in Andover, MA the first weekend in December! Check out the details here and then come join us for a great day of mind-body practice on Sunday, December 4th from noon to 3pm!