Recent Blog Articles

Harvard Health Blog

The new exercise guidelines: Any changes for you?

June 25, 2019

About the Author

photo of Lauren Elson, MD

Lauren Elson, MD, Contributor

Lauren Elson, MD is board certified in sports medicine and physical medicine and rehabilitation. She attended Tufts University School of Medicine and did her residency at New York Presbyterian Hospital Columbia/Cornell. She then completed a fellowship … See Full Bio
View all posts by Lauren Elson, MD


As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.

No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.


February 9, 2019

With my kids we starts the day with morning yoga stretches Even them like the benefits of doing yoga in the morning before school.

Lynda Jackson
January 7, 2019

Where does Reformer Pilates fit into this equation?

December 27, 2018

I think it is important to let people know, who have been bed ridden, that it is much better to start out on a bike or stationary bike rather than walking. Your knees lose strength extremely fast and walking can cause stress fractures. So if your knees hurt with new exercise, don’t give up. Start on a bike. 🙂

December 25, 2018

I find 15 minutes nonstop swimming for 2 or 3 days a week to be the best health exercise …You add 3 days walking for 30 minutes …
This is my best and I highly recommend it…

John Nunn
December 24, 2018

I’m 81 years old and stay active with jogging and gym work and pickleball. These new guidelines do not say anything useful to me. They’re too vague to be of value.

December 24, 2018

I found a lot of articles on balance just by searching with the word “balance” in this health topics forum. I’m a jogger getting older and I know that just aerobic exercise is not enough as I age. I’m probably going to check out those articles too!

William C Nappi
December 24, 2018

What exercise routine do you recommend for a 90 year old male?

January 13, 2019

Talk to your doctor or other health professional.

James DeLong
December 24, 2018

I need rigorous physical activity to sleep well: 10,000 steps/day plus weights, yoga and swimming.

Dale Matson
December 24, 2018

I am age 74 and have been very active for the last 30 years. I have been involved in triathlons including Hawaii Ironman. My wife and I still back pack in the high Sierra Nevada. My biggest challenge seems to be balance. part of this may be declining eyesight but my flexibility is not what it once was. I don’t fall but trekking poles provide help on trails. I have considered hiring a coach at the fitness club for woking on balance.

lalit chaturvedi
December 24, 2018

Try yoga – taadasana

December 24, 2018

69 and a few falls later my physio has me tie an exercise band around a heavy base with 2 feet hanging down on each side,knotted in the middle. Stand on one foot to balance and grasp each side about 4inches down from the middle knot. Pull on the right or left side to maintain your balance.It helps restore your proprioception and reestablish your ability to correct your body when you feel off balance. Over time hold the bands lower each day. Good luck.

rajesh menon
December 24, 2018

You can greatly improve your balance by strengthening your core. Bosu ball workouts and planks help a lot in stabilizing your balance.
Good Luck Matson.

Peter Rawlek
December 25, 2018

Hello Dale-
This is not intended to be medical advice without an examination which is advisable – I am a physician in Canada, a previous national team athlete – balance and balance issues are mosaic of interlocking aspects of physical health (numerology, strength and endurance of stabilizers, ROM at hip & engagement in recovery to protect from fall, peripheral nerve health, eyesight, proprioception, etc) that result in balance. Seeking qualified expert assessment is an essential first step, especially to continue to be active for anyone who notes instability… but looking at recovery from or preventing a fall if that happens, a contributor to a big crashing fall when one is suddenly falling is how does one recover. ROM at the hip and proper engagement of the gluts (your larger ass muscles) is a primary determinant, or last result to providing recovery once you are falling- three points:
1- proper squaring and loading – recovery position should focus on glut engagement ( note 90% of older patients squat in a very weak position whee falling is imminent)
2- “practice makes perfect” and poor habits mean limited possibility to recover. — so all people should practice proper squat technique- proper recovery 2 sets 5 – 10 reps daily
3- resistance work with exercise expert guidance is a third piece.

Dale you have invested in health— though you are an oddity — this is applicable to all North Americans — whatever the reason for falling (which SHOULD be sorted out) being able to recover and having established proper muscle recruitment patterns (loading massive gluts versus using weak knees in recovery) is imperative and commonly overlooked when looking for a cause —

December 25, 2018

Try Tai chi. Will aid in balance by strengthening muscles that you thought you were ok with. Also will give peace of mind

Cheryl Fletcher
December 25, 2018

try yoga or Pilalates. Pirates has done wonders for my flexibility- more than yoga did.

December 28, 2018

Try T’ai Chi

Al razzi
December 24, 2018

All of you points are interesting and useful. One thing you failed to mention about for people who have some disabilities in walking and balancing. These people cannot just jump on the tread mill and jog for 30 minutes.
For these people Yoga or Tai Chi are more appropriate, instead of cardio or muscle or bone building exercises. The beauty of Yoga is that it helps in becoming supple,energitic,vibrant build muscles and balance and also work on your internal organs which most of jogging and tennis failed to do except building your heart and lung capacity. Yoga by its breathing exercises will help your lungs and also clear your mind.

Nancy Perkins
December 24, 2018

Multi-component physical activity could include walking a young strong dog.

Cecil R burnett
December 15, 2018

25 minutes. Six days per week.

Commenting has been closed for this post.

Free Healthbeat Signup

Get the latest in health news delivered to your inbox!

Harvard Health Publishing Logo

Thanks for visiting. Don't miss your FREE gift.

The Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness, is yours absolutely FREE when you sign up to receive Health Alerts from Harvard Medical School

Sign up to get tips for living a healthy lifestyle, with ways to fight inflammation and improve cognitive health, plus the latest advances in preventative medicine, diet and exercise, pain relief, blood pressure and cholesterol management, and more.

Harvard Health Publishing Logo

Health Alerts from Harvard Medical School

Get helpful tips and guidance for everything from fighting inflammation to finding the best diets for weight loss...from exercises to build a stronger core to advice on treating cataracts. PLUS, the latest news on medical advances and breakthroughs from Harvard Medical School experts.

BONUS! Sign up now and
get a FREE copy of the
Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness

Harvard Health Publishing Logo

Stay on top of latest health news from Harvard Medical School.

Plus, get a FREE copy of the Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness.