• Gonçalo Nuno Figueiredo DiasEmail author
  • Micael Santos Couceiro
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Well-Being and Quality of Life Research book series (BRIEFSWELLBEING)


Narrowing down all that was previously presented to a sentence, the focus of this short book was to exploit the topic of active ageing and physical activity in a multidisciplinary perspective. This Springer Brief presented itself as a compendium that scientifically described the major pathologies and psychomotor difficulties plaguing the ageing body, presenting several exercises adequately represented with real pictures, which allowed to illustrate, in detail, the methodologies presented in the contemporary literature on the topic. This final chapter presents a short summary of the book, discussing its practical implications and providing some final recommendations for the active senior citizen.


Practical Implications Recommendations Ageing Health Active life 

5.1 Conclusions

Active ageing means the maintenance of both motor and intellectual activities when they retire and move from an active to inactive state. Hence, it is urgent to implement healthy lifestyles and good health habits whose recommendations are well known in Western societies. Mostly everything surrounding the elderly defines active ageing, namely culture, gender, health systems, social services, behaviours, lifestyles, personal aspects, physical environment, social environment, and economic factors. Accordingly, it is necessary to optimize health, participation, and security opportunities, in order to improve the overall quality of life of the elderly.

Active ageing may contribute to reduce the morbidity and mortality in the older population, allowing to further reduce health care costs that usually increase as this population ages. Regular physical activity can improve the quality of life of the elderly and help controlling degenerative diseases (e.g., osteoporosis, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases).

5.2 Practical Implications

Physical activity programmes, as described in this work, may have practical applications in the physical, mental, and social well-being of the elderly, simultaneously reducing the risk of chronic diseases, including hypertension, type-2 diabetes, osteoporosis, obesity, colon cancer, breast cancer, among other diseases.

However, a physical activity programme designed for seniors implies the knowledge of the physical limitations, existing pathologies, and individual changes arising from ageing. Therefore, before starting any physical activity programme for the elderly, participants should undergo a rigorous and thorough medical evaluation.

Likewise, it is also necessary to gather as much additional information (e.g., morphological characteristics, functional fitness, medical history, medication support, and daily routines).

5.3 Recommendations

As last remarks, daily 30–45-min walks are recommended for the elderly.

Strict eating habits and appetite control in the elderly is required, especially at the level of salt consumption. The elderly may opt for a Mediterranean diet, which provides a healthy and balanced nutrition.

Blood pressure should also be supervised in a daily basis by the elderly or health professionals.

A regular physical activity programme, as described in this work, can be complemented with other initiatives (e.g., yoga, walking, swimming, and cycling).

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gonçalo Nuno Figueiredo Dias
    • 1
    Email author
  • Micael Santos Couceiro
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Sport Sciences and Physical Education (CIDAF)University of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal
  2. 2.Ingeniarius, Ltd.CoimbraPortugal

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