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15 Unique Activities for Seniors to Improve Their Quality of Life

A group of four seniors chatting happily about unique activities for seniors

Humans are social beings. Deep connections with others are one of the secrets to living a quality life. We inherently want to belong to a group or a community, which drives our social behaviors.

The need for social relationships doesn’t disappear with age. Unfortunately, many seniors face reduced social opportunities due to factors related to aging.

As they’re faced with declining health, limited mobility, and reduced sensory skills, they won’t be able to move around, go out, drive, or meet with friends as freely as they used to, which can lead to social isolation.

Loneliness and isolation can make seniors susceptible to health risks. Let’s examine the effects of isolation on health and learn the benefits of a few unique activities for seniors.

Impact of Social Isolation on Older People Based on Studies

A study of 67,173 individuals aged 50+ from 17 European countries compared the physical activity, diet, number of doctor visits, and risk of depression between highly socially isolated people and low/intermediate isolated people.

Results Highly Socially Isolated Older Adults Low/Intermediate Isolated Older Adults
Physical activity Are 30% more likely to be physically inactive Only 17.2% more likely to be physically inactive
Diet (daily consumption of fruits and vegetables) Are 28.5% less likely to consume fruits and vegetables Only 22.1% less likely to have inadequate diet
Risk for depression Are 43.1 times more likely to be depressed Only 26.7 times more likely to be depressed
Doctor visits in the last 12 months 7.7 times 6.7 times

Source: BMC Public Health

The study proves that even low engagements with others through social activities can reduce health risks.


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, social isolation is prevalent among older adults aged 50 and older, increasing the risk of early death. Poor social relationships also increase the chances of heart disease and stroke by 29% and 32%, respectively.

Socialization is an important facet of overall well-being. Older people receiving adequate social support from others live longer and tend to be happier. How do you, as a caregiver, ensure that your senior loved one has opportunities to socialize? Here are 15 interesting activities Amy’s Eden recommends you try.

Easy Activities for Seniors

Regardless of physical limitations, your loved one can maintain an active social life. Here are entertaining activities that require little effort but promote social connections.

  • Spa day at home

A senior mom and her daughter having facial treatment at home. unique activities for seniors

At-home spa treatments are a great way for seniors and other family members to bond and indulge in hot baths, facials, and other services to feel better.

A hot bath or massage therapy is good for relaxation, soothes stiff muscles and joints, and increases blood circulation. It also reduces stress and improves sleep.

Manicures and pedicures can prevent nail infections, while anti-aging facial treatments improve physical appearance and promote healthy and glowing skin.

Wellness spa breaks are a form of self-care.

  • Online shopping

A senior woman holding a credit card and using a tablet to shop online. unique activities for seniors

Shopping is a recurring task and can be a fun activity for seniors. Letting your senior mom or dad shop for their daily necessities and giving them that opportunity to make a decision reinforce a sense of empowerment. It supports autonomy and self-sufficiency.

Comfort buying or retail therapy helps release endorphins or happy hormones that trigger excitement, happiness, and pleasure. Endorphins are also natural painkillers, which relieve stress and make people feel good.

A group of six seniors singing in a choir. unique activities for seniors

Several studies have looked at the link between aging and religiosity. One particular survey found that 65% of older adults said that religion is very important to them, compared to only 40% of Millennials.

Attending church regularly and participating in religious activities are not the only ways to cope with fear about one’s own mortality. For many seniors, it’s a way to socialize with other church members and meet new people.


Church is an excellent opportunity to engage with family, neighbors, and friends.

Morning Activities for Seniors

The best way to start the morning is by moving. This can be through exercise or a hobby involving body movements, such as dancing, swimming, bicycle riding, etc. Here are the three best morning social activities for seniors.

  • Chair yoga

An elderly man doing chair yoga in his bedroom. unique activities for seniors

Chair yoga is good for those with chronic pain conditions and people who can’t do traditional yoga due to limited mobility. It’s an easy exercise with multiple benefits to the physical body and social life. It helps maintain balance and coordination, increases flexibility, improves focus, and builds muscle strength.

Seniors who attend chair yoga classes also preserve their social skills when interacting with other participants. Your loved one can sign up for an online chair yoga class or check with a nearby senior center.

  • Indoor gardening

A senior woman watering the plants on her balcony. unique activities for seniors

Interacting with nature through planting, caring for plants, touching the leaves or flowers, and watering, can have a positive impact on the psychological well-being of a senior.

Indoor gardening is fun and it also has powerful mental health benefits. Being around plants can relieve anxiety and stress. Some plants can even purify the air inside the home.

If your loved one hasn’t tried indoor gardening yet, now is the best time to start. Some of the perfect indoor plant options that don’t require constant care are spider plants, ferns, and snake plants.

  • Resistance training

A senior man doing squats at the gym. unique activities for seniors

While sit-ups, planks, squats, and push-ups aren’t safe for all older people, resistance training is one of the daily activities for seniors with tremendous benefits, including improved cognition.

In one study among individuals aged 55 and older, six months of high-intensity resistance training resulted in better cognitive ability in people with mild cognitive impairment. It also prevented degeneration of the hippocampal subfields (the areas of the brain that are vulnerable to Alzheimer’s disease) for one year.

If you plan to include resistance training in your loved one’s morning routine, consult your physician to ensure it’s completely safe.

Free Activities for Seniors

When looking for ideas for activities for seniors, you can leverage what you already have, such as smartphones. Besides playing mobile games, here are some options:

  1. Listen to a podcast

A smiling senior woman with headphones sitting on the floor. unique activities for seniors

Seniors are learning to optimize technology, and one of them is by listening to podcasts. There are many inspiring, educational, and empowering free podcasts that would be of interest to aging adults.

If your loved one wants to listen to motivational talks, they can tune in to TED Talks, or if they want to stay current on world events, they can listen to The Daily podcasts from an app.

There are abundant resources on podcasts from every possible field of interest. Listening to others’ perspectives on certain topics is a wonderful way for seniors to engage with the world around them.

  1. Video calling loved ones

A happy senior couple sitting on a sofa using a phone to video call. unique activities for seniors

Communication is key to building healthy and quality relationships. Another good activity to boost sociability for seniors living alone is a group video call.

Using Skype, WhatsApp, FaceTime, or other video communication tools to start a group video call with children and grandchildren is an efficient way to strengthen personal connections regardless of the distance.

Video calling is the closest thing to face-to-face conversations. Your senior loved one will surely have a good time catching up with recent happenings in other family members’ lives.

  1. Pressing flowers

An old lady's hand holding scissors and cutting flowers off. unique activities for seniors

If your loved one has a flower garden and wants to do something besides arranging flowers, then try pressing flowers. Pressed flowers can be used as bookmarks, decorations on note cards, candles, and paper lanterns. If you add a coat of clear epoxy resin, you can create a coaster, jewelry, key chain, phone case, and many more items.

Pressing flowers is fun and an excellent way for a loved one to use their creative skills.

Individual Activities for Seniors

Individual activities are also socially beneficial to seniors. Here are three options we recommend:

  1. Arts and crafts projects

A senior woman holding a Christmas wreath she made. unique activities for seniors

There are numerous arts and crafts projects that your senior mom or dad can do to express their creative side. From crocheting, sewing, jewelry making, and more, moving their hands continuously and committing to an art project is an effective strategy to reduce negative emotions, anxiety, and depression. There’s also the feeling of satisfaction in completing a project.

Many older people pursue arts as an outlet for self-expression and relief from built-up stress in the mind and body.

If your loved one is keen on starting an art project, allow them to choose what they want to do. Some unique ideas are creating DIY wallpaper, scented candles, paper flowers, handcrafted soap, embroidery, and calligraphy.

  1. Pet therapy

A happy senior couple sitting and petting their dog. unique activities for seniors

Beneficial social relationships aren’t limited to human interactions. One study explored the benefits of owning a pet and its impact on psychological health. For seniors living in a community, owning a pet gave them a sense of purpose and reduced their loneliness while increasing socialization.

Creating a bond with pets, not just dogs and cats, but also birds, fishes, and other animals can improve mood, self-esteem, and energy levels. Pets are also great companions at home.

  1. Paint by the numbers and diamond painting kits

An older woman holding a brush and painting. unique activities for seniors

Not everyone can draw, but we can all admire Picasso, van Gogh, or Michaelangelo and dream of what it feels like to live an artist’s life.

For seniors who want to bring out the artist in them, painting by number or diamond painting kits can give them a satisfying artistic experience. No drawing skills required. Using one of these kits will allow your loved one to create a masterpiece.

These art kits come in various designs and patterns, and your loved one can choose between easy and advanced art kits. This activity keeps the brain agile and promotes good mental health.

Group Activities for Seniors Citizens

There are fun community activities for seniors that are good for their health and also provide learning opportunities. Here are three examples:

  1. Swimming and water aerobics

Three senior women in swimsuits doing water aerobics. unique activities for seniors

Swimming is an ideal activity to cool off during summer. It can strengthen the cardiovascular system, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of lung and heart disease. Swimming is an inclusive activity, even for seniors with limited mobility, as long as it’s safe for them to stay in the water for a period of time. It’s low-impact and gentle on the joints.

Many swim centers offer personalized training sessions for every age, including seniors. A group swimming activity is an amazing opportunity for your loved one to make friends with shared interests.

  1. Book clubs

A group of three senior women and one younger woman meeting for a book club. unique activities for seniors

Book clubs are perfect small group activities for seniors who love to read. Joining a club can open up new perspectives and ideas. Reading is also a good workout for the brain, and it’s known to preserve memory, keeping the brain younger.

When your loved one joins a book club, they’ll have the opportunity to discuss their favorite books with other members. Book club members exchange ideas and learn from each other.

  1. Volunteering

A senior woman smiling at the camera with her group of other volunteers cleaning the park. unique activities for seniors

Giving back to the community gives one a sense of purpose. Volunteering isn’t exclusively for younger people. Seniors have decades of experience and wisdom to share. There are charities, schools, animal shelters, veteran programs, and many other volunteer opportunities, like preparing food for Meals on Wheels.

Volunteerism can make a difference in the world, your community, and in the life of your loved one.

If your loved one is open for volunteer activities but doesn’t know where to start, check out AmeriCorps Seniors. There are opportunities for people aged 55 and older, and your loved one can choose from thousands of volunteer programs that might interest them.

Making Each Moment in Golden Years Count

A senior couple sitting and laughing together. unique activities for seniors

Opportunities to gather with others through social events are the key to living a quality, fulfilled, and purposeful life. At Amy’s Eden, we make sure that each occasion to get together and socialize is time well spent.

With our passionate caregivers supporting only two residents in each home, residents can play and do things they love for as long as they want and still receive adequate care and support at the right times. At Amy’s Eden, we help residents enjoy each moment of their golden years.

If you would like to know what a fulfilling retirement life looks, then schedule a tour and see our engaging calendar of events.

Do you prefer to age in place and need dependable caregivers? We have fully trained in-home caregivers who can travel to your home and provide the right amount of care to your loved one in need.

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