Total Body Stretch for Seniors

This total body stretch takes you through simple, relaxing moves to stretch the hamstrings, quads, calves, back, chest and arms. Flexibility is important for staying fit, agile and functional. It's part of a healthy exercise program to keep your body in working order as you age. It's also a relaxing activity to do on your rest days.


See your doctor if you have any medical conditions, illnesses or injuries. It's likely that your doctor will cheer you on, but he may know of modifications that are needed for your condition.

Be sure to review basic guidelines about stretching to do it safely and correctly. 

Equipment Needed 

This stretching routine requires a chair, exercise ball or bench. You will perform most of these stretches seated. You can do this routine at home or at the gym.

How to Do the Total Body Stretch for Seniors

  • Begin with a 5-10 minute warm-up of light cardio (such as walking in place, etc.)
  • Hold each stretch for 10-30 seconds and repeat for one to three times.
  • Perform these stretches after a workout or after muscles are warm from a hot bath or shower
  • For best results, stretch after cardio and strength training workouts.

Quad Stretch

Active middle-aged couple stretching by the beach
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Do this exercise standing or lying on the floor. Holding onto a wall or chair for support, bend one knee, bringing the foot up behind you towards your backside. Grab onto the foot or ankle with your hand and point the knee towards the floor to feel a stretch down the front of your thigh. Repeat on the other side.         


Hamstring Stretch

Sit on a bench or on a chair with another chair across from you. Stretch one leg out, toes up, with the other foot on the floor. Keep your back straight and abs engaged and bend forward from the hips until you feel a gentle stretch in the back of your leg. If you've had a hip replacement, check with your doctor before doing this stretch.


Calf Stretch

Stand with the hand on the wall for support in split stance--one leg forward and one leg back. Press the back heel towards the floor and lean the body forward until you feel a gentle stretch in your calf. Repeat on the other side.  


Back Stretch

Clasp your hands together in front of you and round your back, pressing your arms away from your body to feel a stretch in your upper back. 


Torso Stretch

Sitting or standing, clasp your hands straight up overhead, palms facing the ceiling. Gently lower to the right side until you feel a stretch down your left side. Switch sides and repeat.


Triceps Stretch

Bend the left elbow behind your head and use the right hand to gently pull the left elbow in further until you feel a stretch in the back of your arm. Switch sides and repeat. 


Chest Stretch

Clasp your hands behind you and gently straighten the arms, lifting them slightly until you feel a stretch across the chest and shoulders. 

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