As a personal support worker (PSW), you may have to provide supportive care to senior clients. Your responsibilities towards them might include ensuring their safety, monitoring their health, assisting with personal hygiene, or helping them with their medication.
One challenge you may encounter when working with older clients is coming up with different ways to keep them moving. You will have to find strategies that engage and stimulate them since movement and exercise have many proven benefits for seniors. They can help reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack and decrease the probability of falls by improving bone density and strengthening muscles.
Here are some ways you can encourage senior clients to move during your career as a PSW!
Talk to Your Clients to Understand What Activities They May Enjoy
Learning more about who your clients are after your PSW training program can help you discover creative ways to keep them active. One important thing that you can do to encourage your clients to move is simply to talk to them. Discovering different things about a client’s past can allow you to develop activities that might be of interest to them instead of just repeating the same generic activities every day. For example, if a client has a special spot that they used to run to when they were younger, you can offer to walk with them to that spot.
Some of your clients might be former athletes, maybe some like to dance, and maybe some like to play croquet. What your clients used to do is very important in determining what they will want to do now in order to stay active.
After Completing Your PSW Training Program, Help Clients Get Outdoors
Going outside can work wonders for physical fitness and well-being. Taking a short walk helps your more sedentary clients, who may spend a fair amount of time indoors, get some much-needed fresh air. For people who have reduced mobility, assistance getting outdoors holds a great deal of value. With your help, clients can experience the benefits of sunshine, movement and friendly conversation.
Being outside is also mentally stimulating. There’s plenty to see and hear. For clients who find they have quite a predictable daily routine, the presence of plants and other people can be refreshing and energizing.
Using nature to lift a client’s mood and energy levels can also have an effect on how motivated they are to be active in the rest of their life. If you cheer a client up with a bit of sun, they are more likely to remain active in general. If your clients get into the habit of moving regularly, their circulation and stress levels will improve, further promoting health and wellness.
Link Mobility to Activities of Daily Living for Clients
A difficult reality for some clients is that their autonomy might be declining. By helping them understand the relationship between movement and independence, you can encourage them to move.
Independence can be fostered through strengthening a client’s ability to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) within their abilities, which you’ll learn about in career college. For instance, if a client enjoys picking out their outfits and dressing themselves, you can link this ability to overall mobility and fitness. Encourage them to preserve the coordination, range of motion and strength required to perform tasks like pulling clothes out of a closet or buttoning up a shirt. When you remind clients of the practical application of fitness, exercise makes more sense to them as something they should prioritize.
Are you looking for a personal support worker college program?
Contact KLC College to learn more!