Fact or Fiction: Active Hobbies for Seniors

Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

No longer is it just "those kids today; tsk, tsk" it may be "those crazy seniors today." What exactly are older folks doing to stay active? Many are doing the same things that people decades younger -- and older -- are doing: moving, shaking and anti-aging. If you think you know what your peers and parents are up to, test your knowledge in our quiz.

Pickleball, a sport gaining in popularity among seniors, is named after the pickle patches where it originated.

The family who came up with the game of pickleball named it after their dog, Pickles, and the ball he liked to chase during games. It was "Pickle's ball."

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Go Bold or Go Old is a high-energy, senior citizen flash mob group.

There are flash mobs made up of seniors, but none by that name when we wrote this quiz.

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A "Clydesdale" is a marathon runner over the age of 50.

Heavier or larger male runners are called "Clydesdales" (the females in the class are "Fillies"), but older runners are just part of the regular pack and aren't singled out by a nickname. We should probably change that.

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Triathletes over age 55 are allotted special time and distance exceptions to help them finish.

Young or old can choose shorter courses, but there are no special accommodations for those over 55 unless they have specific physical limitations.

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Japanese people live the longest mostly because of their strict exercise routines.

Staying active is more of a lifestyle than a rigorous exercise program for many in Japan. It is the Japanese diet, high in vegetables and fish, that seems to aid in their longevity.

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Football players and seniors benefit from belly dancing because it helps with balance and core strength.

They get core benefits from ballet dancing, not belly dancing, although there are senior belly dancing classes (and maybe belly dancing football players), too.

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Senior pit crew drills are gaining in popularity in car racing circuits.

This would be a rush and good physical conditioning, but probably not without liability issues.

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Gardening is losing its following among older Americans in the 21st century as many turn to more active hobbies.

It continues to be one of the most popular senior activities, and as far as active hobbies go, gardening is said to include at least nine movements that meet the 30-minutes a day of exercise recommendation for older adults.

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Walking clubs have long been popular in Scotland, England and Germany but are gaining speed in the United States.

European walking groups have been around since at least the 19th century but started gaining a foothold in the U.S. just decades ago.

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Older men and women from traditional Western religious backgrounds are suspicious of the Eastern elements of yoga, so it isn't catching on with seniors.

Yoga is very popular among seniors, although there is a bit of truth to this. Some programs offer Christian yoga or just plain yoga-based exercises to appeal to people of all ages who don't necessarily want Eastern spirituality with their workouts.

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Pet therapy is popular among seniors because so many dogs need physical conditioning and healing.

Although pairings often benefit both animals and humans, pet therapy is used to improve the health and well-being of seniors by providing companionship and maybe even a walking partner.

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There are several seniors who regularly compete in the extreme sport X Games.

Wobbly skateboards, concrete pipes and jarring BMX runs might not be the best match for seniors, no matter how fit, and that's probably why the X Game competition rosters are maxed out with young dudes.

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Solo seniors often travel with strangers rather than forego a trip or go alone.

Vacation planning companies have long designed trips to accommodate senior groups, but many now offer solo or singles options for pairing travelers along the route. Travel forums also help like-minded wayfarers get to know each other well enough to plan trips together.

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Those who can, run; those who can't, walk.

Though this may be true for some seniors with physical limitations, but don't knock distance or speed walking. Both are rigorous and very healthful forms of exercise and some seniors choose walking over running simply for the social aspects.

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Grandchild-chasing is getting organized with playgroups aimed at pairing grandparents and kids to increase fitness levels for both.

Not really, but the idea isn't a bad one and it probably happens informally worldwide.

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"Chair exercising" is mainly a euphemism for sitting around instead of getting up and getting active.

It's actually an excellent low-impact exercise choice, with options ranging from chair yoga to chair aerobics, and it's not just for seniors. Couch potatoes can claim they are "chair exercising" with air quotes and sarcasm, though.

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Tinkering hobbies like woodworking, appliance repair and car restoration don't have health benefits outside of being enjoyable.

They actually help with hand-eye coordination, arm strength and fine motor skills, not to mention the self-esteem of being able to make old things new again.

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Cutting a rug or shaking your groove thing socially isn't as healthful as repetitive-motion waltzing.

Social dancing, even if you're really bad at it -- not you, of course, but other people -- can make you smarter because it keeps you on your toes thinking about your next moves. Structured dancing is great too, but repetitive movements may involve less brain work.

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Fewer seniors in the United States have been playing golf in recent years.

Due to economic challenges for members and course owners and developers, golf courses have been closing in the hundreds since 2009, meaning that fewer golfers overall are hitting the links.

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Calling napping a "hobby" for active seniors is stretching it.

Naps can recharge old and young and enable them to be more active, so while it may be a stretch, it's kind of a pastime.

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