Retirement marks the close of one chapter and the beginning of another. Independent retirement living offers not only the opportunity to embrace your retirement journey in a beautiful new home, complete with on-site support should you need it, but it opens the doors to a plethora of exciting hobbies to discover.

With a range of amenities, services and facilities on your doorstep, life in a vibrant retirement village is a wonderful way to fully embrace your golden years, meet new friends, and enjoy learning a new skill or passion.

In this article we’ll look at four of the most popular hobbies residents enjoy as part of their daily life in a luxury retirement village.

Why Hobbies are Beneficial in Retirement

Retirement presents a unique opportunity to explore a world of hobbies and interests that may have taken a backseat during your busy years of work and family life. Hobbies, defined as activities people engage in during their leisure time for pleasure, might range from volunteering or being part of a club to reading, gardening, playing games, and arts and crafts.

Engaging in new hobbies can not only add vibrancy and joy to your daily routine, but can also contribute significantly to your overall health, socialisation, and wellbeing. 

According to a new study led by UCL researchers, having a hobby can have a positive effect on your physical and mental health, including lessening symptoms of depression and increasing levels of happiness. They can help you feel more satisfied with life by giving you a greater sense of purpose and fulfilment you may be missing since leaving your working life. They can also help combat feelings of loneliness and isolation and keep your mind sharp. 

Hobbies taken up in independent retirement living can allow you to rediscover meaning and purpose, and add extra fulfilment to your life.

Hobbies to Enhance Independent Retirement Living

The process of finding a hobby can be exciting, as you explore new interests and discover new abilities and passions. With a little patience and persistence, you can find a hobby that brings you joy and satisfaction.

Let’s look at four popular hobbies available in independent retirement living communities such as Santhem.

1.   Chair Classes with the Wellness Coach

Keeping fit and healthy is important throughout all stages of life, but as you get older, keeping active, to the best of your abilities, is extremely beneficial for maintaining a healthy weight, strengthening your muscles, and boosting your energy and mood.

Staying active can help with both physical and mental wellbeing, and at Santhem, our Wellness Coach can work with you to design a completely personalised approach to your unique needs and abilities.

Many retirement villages, such as Santhem, have an on-site gym and experts who focus on every individual’s independence, dignity, wellbeing, and care.

To help keep your body active and feeling its best, why not join in with an exercise class? Chair classes provide an excellent opportunity to socialise with others while giving your body a gentle but effective workout. They are wonderful for improving posture, balance, and muscle strength and are suitable for people with even reduced mobility.

2.   Arts and Crafts Classes

Fancy getting a bit creative? Even if art wasn’t a passion of yours earlier in life, creating art causes the brain to continue to adapt, restructure, and reshape, leading to the potential to increase brain capacity. 

According to a study conducted by George Washington University, older adults who participate in art and cultural hobbies visit the doctor less, require reduced prescribed medication, have less risk of falls, and feel happier and more socially connected. 

At Santhem, we hold arts and crafts classes every Thursday, and you don’t need to be the next Monet to join in! Just come with an open mind and enjoy immersing yourself in a new hobby surrounded by friends and peers.

3.   Weekly EGYM Programmes

EGYM is a global fitness technology leader that makes exercise smarter, more efficient, and a lot more fun. Exercise options like EGYM offer a proven way for older adults to improve their strength, reduce their fall risks, and provide the ability and confidence to exercise independently and safely in a social and fun way.

Research conducted by ARCO shows that currently 30% of people over the age of 65 will fall at least once per year. But falls should not be a normal part of ageing, and many falls can be prevented through muscle strengthening and balance training. This is where weekly EGYM programmes come in and why taking part in such programmes can be such a beneficial, not to mention enjoyable, new hobby.

4.   Join a Bowls Club

Looking for a brand-new sport to take up? Lawn bowls is a low-impact, therapeutic exercise for all levels of fitness that can improve strength, coordination, and confidence.

Walking up and down the green and rolling the bowls can help offset muscle loss and give you a healthy dose of competition. Bowls is also a lovely community sport where like-minded people come together to enjoy competition, camaraderie, and some good physical activity. Lots of bowls clubs also put on social events, providing opportunities to meet and socialise with new people. 

A number of our residents at Santhem belong to the popular Hutton Poplars Bowling Club, where they enjoy the friendly, sociable atmosphere and compete in a number of local leagues, as well as take part in their weekly club night.

Enjoy Independent Retirement Living Your Way

The journey into retirement is the perfect time to explore new hobbies and unlock a wealth of physical, mental, and emotional benefits. Whether it’s rediscovering a long-lost passion, or venturing into something completely new, embracing hobbies not only adds to the joy of life but can also contribute to a healthier and more rewarding retirement experience 

At Santhem, we’re here to help you live your retirement years to the full, which is why we offer a wide variety of exciting activities and programmes just waiting to be enjoyed. If you have any questions about our facilities and amenities, please do get in touch with our friendly team.