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Starts at $9.98 per contact hour
Min. Hours $$/Hr
4 hours $8.98
8 hours $7.98
12 hours $6.98
20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98

Physical Activity and Healthy Aging

2.5 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe the physiological and psychological benefits of physical activity, various types of physical activity and their health benefits, the factors of an effective exercise program, and the benefits of movement (walking, yoga, and tai chi).
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Physical activity is essential for healthy aging and well-being. Throughout life, engaging in enjoyable movement, such as walking, dancing, golfing, swimming, and cycling can increase the chances for health and vitality in later years.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the physiological benefits of exercise.
  • Describe the types of physical activity.
  • Differentiate between anaerobic activity and aerobic activity.
  • Explain the physiological effects of physical activity.
  • Identify the risks of physical activity.
  • Explain the psychological effects of exercise on health.
  • Describe the benefits of movement activities such as walking, yoga, and tai chi.
  • Discuss the methods for initiating a physical activity program.

A critical component of healthy aging, physical activity has an important role in promoting good health, functional independence, and quality of life. Yet only about 71% of adults aged 65 and older participate in leisure-time physical activity, and only one-third achieve recommended physical activity levels (Hansen, 2010. The good news is that it is never too late to become physically active, and even a small amount of activity results in better health. For many adults, growing older seems to involve an inevitable loss of strength, stamina, energy, and fitness. But it does not need to be this way. When it comes to our muscles and physical fitness, the old adage applies: “use it or lose it” (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality [AHRQ], 2002).

The benefits of a physically active lifestyle extend throughout life. There is increasing evidence to suggest that habitual aerobic exercise, such as circuit training, cycling, jogging, swimming, and walking, can improve strength and aerobic capacity. Significant physiological, psychological, social, and societal benefits accrue from participation in physical activity.

However, there is little agreement on the best content and type of physical activity program for older adults. This is due, in part, to the older population’s tremendous diversity. For physical activity programs to be effective, they need to be multidimensional, including a combination of cardiovascular endurance, muscle strength, flexibility, balance, and coordination activities.

The human body is an amazing, complex entity with approximately 60 to 90 trillion cells (Arizona State University [ASU], 2010; Eliopoulos, 2004). It’s made to move; it’s that simple. From the high school coach who said sports builds character to the way you feel on the dance floor boogying with your friends to the fun of tossing a Frisbee at a park, moving feels good. Even as you sit and read these words, your heart pumps blood across miles of arteries and veins, your eyes move across the page, your lungs expand and contract, and neurons in your brain fire. Every time you move a muscle, your cells mobilize energy and remove waste products (Seaward, 2011).

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Behavioral Sciences
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors
  • NCBTMB -National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork
  • Florida Board of Massage Therapists


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Domain of OT

Course Expires:

May 30, 2019

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.