Christmas is typically a very social time. A time for family, for friends and community, coming together to create and share joyous memories.
This year will be a Christmas like no other. Cocooning and Self-Isolation mean we may need to break from tradition for the wellbeing of ourselves and our loved ones. But that doesn’t mean it can't be just as enjoyable as any other. Here are a few ideas to help you feel festive at home and to make this Christmas as memorable as any other.
1. “The Best Way to Spread Christmas Cheer is Singing Loud for All to Hear”
While there are very few things more irritating than premature Christmas songs playing in the shops, you can take the reins at home with the radio or any one of a number of Apps. Studies have shown that actively listening to music can lower blood pressure and stress and even reduce pain in some cases.
Alternatively, if you’re feeling a little stage fright, you can leave it to the professionals and tune in to a carol service. There are plenty of these available online to get your festive fix.
2. Deck the Halls
Once you’re all decked out, why not indulge in some fresh air and a light show by checking out the lights in your neighbourhood and nearby streets - those within a 5k radius of course.
3. Connect with Loved ones.
4. Find the Festive Flix
Curl in to the couch with your comfiest pyjamas and a cup of hot chocolate (or tea) and indulge. Christmas movies have long held a spot in the list of Christmas traditions for good reason. They offer the perfect opportunity to disconnect from reality for an hour or two and indulge in a world of pure positivity and joy.
Gowan, it's Christmas!
It has been widely accepted that cocooning and self-quarantining are the most effective ways of keeping the most vulnerable members of our society safe during these difficult times. However, long periods of isolation can have significant impacts on our physical and mental health. Under these conditions, it is all too easy to fall in to a sedentary lifestyle.
The World Health Organisation is one of the many expert bodies that identify physical activity and relaxation techniques as a valuable tool to help remain calm and promote health. They recommend completing 150 minutes of moderately intense exercise per week. There are numerous ways an older person can achieve this goal.
Small day to day tasks like household chores and gardening all add up and contribute to keeping active. Below, we have outlined a number of activities that would be ideally suited to an older person cocooning of self-quarantining. We recommend these activities be completed in the company of a carer or family member. For individuals with any physical restrictions/impairments, we also advise consulting your doctor before beginning a new or vigorous exercise routine.
Yoga is a great way to keep the body moving and is suitable to all ages and levels of mobility. Continued practise can increase strength, balance and flexibility. Whether you just want to touch your toes or learn to stand on your head, there are numerous guides and classes available online to get you started that can be followed at home.
Circuit training is one of the best ways to exercise as it is highly customisable, each part of
the circuit can be specifically chosen and adapted to suit individual ability and needs. Simply
choose 4-6 different exercises and switch between them, doing reps of 15-20 at a time. We
recommend including squats, leg raises, lunges and chair dips as these are simple but highly
effective exercises to increase strength, fitness and overall health. You can also include the
other activities from this list in your circuit.
Physical activity not only promotes health, is a great way to prevent boredom during periods
of cocooning and self-quarantining. It’s a great opportunity to set goals and develop new
skills that will continue to improve your health long after the Lockdown comes to and end.