24 million Americans between the ages of 60 and 80 can’t walk a quarter of a mile, according to a recent study

And doctors are finding that the main obstacles for the elderly aren't debilitating injuries, but that they feel they don't have time, they lack motivation, or maybe they don’t believe that they’re capable — just like many other adults. 

Furthermore, many of the physical limitations seniors set for themselves are self-determined. So even though no physician or medical professional has told you not to exercise, you might think you aren’t young enough to take up a new physical hobby, or that it’s too late to start.

The truth is, staying active into your 80s, 90s and beyond improves your overall health — your body and mind. Even something as simple as walking in groups can improve your quality of life drastically, boosting your mood, providing social interaction, and increasing your flexibility.

And there are the physical benefits, of course — bone and joint health, stamina, and blood pressure are all positively affected by daily exercise, such as walking or swimming.

Starting slowly is best, especially if you’ve been inactive in the past. The key, though, is getting started, and forming a daily habit. Contact your primary care physician for help on getting started; they will be able to recommend an exercise schedule that works best for you.