How Do Outdoor Activities Support People with Alzheimer’s?
It’s distressing to see a loved one begin to act differently and lose track of precious memories. However, the challenges that come with people living with Alzheimer’s or dementia don’t have to mean the end of exciting adventures.
The benefits of spending time outdoors have been well documented as rejuvenating mental and physical health, which is why it’s so important that people with Alzheimer’s or dementia experience activities out in the open. Engaging in outside adventures like bushcraft or having a leisurely cycle through the woodlands of Exmoor can provide many with a calming yet exciting experience.
At Calvert Exmoor, we specialise in providing safe, fun and accessible holidays for dementia and Alzheimer’s related conditions, designed for everyone no matter their level of ability.
Outdoor Activities for People with Alzheimer’s
We understand how integral structure is for people with Alzheimer’s, so we schedule our activities to provide routine. Routine and the physical challenges our activities provide are immensely valuable for reducing cognitive decline and promoting balance and strength.
Some of the best activities for dementia and Alzheimer’s include:
All these activities and more are suitable for individuals with Alzheimer’s.
One day you might spend time whizzing around the scenic landscape of Exmoor, past sun-dappled woodlands and the tranquil waters of Wistlandpound Reservoir on our adaptive bikes. The types of bikes available are wheelchair front-loaders, recumbent bikes, hand cycles and side-by-side tandems.
Another day, you could get to know our horses and drive a horse-drawn carriage with guidance from expert riding instructors or get in touch with the surrounding flora by learning bushcrafts.
Support at Every Stage of Alzheimer’s
Whether it’s early, middle stage or late stage Alzheimer’s, we make our activities accessible for all.
Some may think that creating new experiences is pointless if memory loss is severe, but just because someone suffers from memory issues doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy positive experiences and adventures.
Emotional memory is still very much present; people with Alzheimer’s will remember how you make them feel, even if they don’t recall specific details.
The help we offer individuals with Alzheimer’s and dementia is only made possible with your assistance. Please think about supporting us however you can to guarantee we can continue our work in helping to enrich the lives of our guests.
Group Connection & Mental Health
No matter what stage of Alzheimer’s, getting to experience an activity with a group offers significant benefits for improving mental health. Our guests get the opportunity to establish solidarity when facing fun adventures and overcoming challenges together, which bolsters a real sense of achievement.
Establishing connections via group activities is very therapeutic and necessary as mental health issues are prevalent for people with this condition, especially in the early and middle stages. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, around 40% of people with Alzheimer’s struggle with depression.
They suggest that, after seeking out professional help, natural treatments are also incredibly beneficial. For example:
- Regular exercise, especially in the morning
- Celebrate successes no matter how small
- Schedule things and keep a routine
- List activities that they enjoy
- Inspirational activities as a form of nurture
- Support groups for those who want to take a more active role in seeking help
As you can see, a combination of routine, physical exercise, group support and activities all contribute to improving the quality of life for people with Alzheimer’s.
Nature & General Well Being
Research has shown that spending time around some natural scenery is an excellent form of stress relief. For example, green exercise helps:
- Improve cognitive ability and keep the brain active
- Lower blood pressure
- Boost your mood
Outdoor adventures are the ideal balance of relaxing and energising.
A residential trip to Calvert Exmoor entails an experience packed to the brim with fun activities. If you would like to learn more about our accessible holidays, please contact our expert team.