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Why you should consider picking up a hobby

A person plotting a plant

The concept of retirement can be daunting for some, especially if you will be out of employment for the first time. If you will be deviating from your busy work schedule for the first time, suddenly having an open calendar can cause you to wonder how you will keep yourself busy. However, picking up a hobby can be extremely beneficial throughout this next chapter of your life, so is definitely something for you to consider.

According to The Telegraph, one in five people who retire spend time learning a new skill. From dancing and learning a new language to cooking and sports, there are a plethora of various things waiting for you to try your hand at. However, although a hobby may be seen as little more than a fun activity to devote your time to, they actually come with a number of benefits to enrich your quality of life.

Mental benefits

A palette of paints

Your mental dexterity is incredibly important, and it has been proven that picking up a hobby later in life can greatly improve this. Keeping your brain active can reduce the side effects of ageing such as dementia and Alzheimer’s, whilst improving your memory recollection. However, although a hobby can stimulate your mind, preventing a decline in brain power, there are also myriad other benefits that picking up a hobby in older age comes with.

For many, loneliness and isolation can come as a result of reduced mobility. Losing your independence not only means that you could become reliant on another but has the opportunity to lead to depression. Finding something that you love, whether that is a physical activity such as gardening or fishing or something creative like art, it gives you something to focus on. Also, having a hobby to occupy you means that you can take a break from worrying whilst spending your time doing something that you enjoy. Not only is this great to keep you busy but can help to improve your happiness. With the addition of a stair lift at home, you can soon begin to feel more self-reliant, enhancing your quality of life.

Physical benefits

A person cooking food

Upon reaching retirement, you may have created a list of things that you would like to accomplish, and, for many, this includes travelling to new destinations. Learning a new language is one of the most frequently adopted hobbies and putting what you have learnt to good use can be a great way to take this to the next level.

Whether you plan on ticking off your bucket list destinations in distant locations or somewhere closer to home, travelling can help you physically. Exploring new towns, cities and villages means spending a lot of time on foot, which can help to improve balance, increase muscle tone and decrease the risk of coronary heart disease. Naturally, it is vital that you don’t over-exert yourself and schedule regular pit stops where you can pause for a drink and rest your legs for a while when on day trips or excursions.

Research has also found that those who have physical hobbies experience “lower blood pressure, total cortisol, waist circumference, and body mass index, and perceptions of better physical function.” Sports are a fantastic way to utilise this, especially if you try something low impact, such as swimming or yoga, as they are said to relieve pressure on the joints. There are often clubs in your local area that will connect you with likeminded people, allowing you to socialise and boost your morale. Jogging is another great alternative, as it can lower cholesterol, prevent blood clots and reduce age-related physical decline.

Social benefits

A person who has been cooking

Often one of the things that older people miss upon reaching retirement is the social aspect that their job once provided them with. Paired with the likelihood of decreased mobility, leaving your job can sometimes mean that you will experience periods of feeling lonely. For those with mobility problems, you may feel as though you need to leave your home in order to meet with others. However, when used correctly, the internet can allow you to connect with people with similar interests. Forums and social networking sites are fantastic for reducing feelings of isolation for those who spend extended time periods at home. However, if possible, socialising in a group provides the biggest benefits.

There are myriad benefits that are accompanied by participating in group activities. When you socialise, you can strengthen your communication skills, which are incredibly beneficial when it comes to building and maintaining relationships. Social skills can also help to enrich other areas of your life, such as your memory by keeping it agile. This is great if you’ve recently retired and found that your memory recall isn’t as good as it once was.

Why should you consider picking up a hobby?

Not only is a hobby great as it allows you to spend time doing what you love, but the health benefits that accompany them can keep your brain functioning at its best capacity and minimise side effects such as loneliness that those who have recently retired can sometimes feel. We’ve composed a list of the most important reasons as to why you should pick up a hobby below:

  • Keeps you busy
  • Reduces the likelihood of Alzheimer’s and related disorders
  • Improves memory recollection
  • Prevents feelings of loneliness
  • Works as a de-stressor
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Helps improve communication skills
  • Allows you to build relationships

This news article is from Companion Stairlifts. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.