The key to keeping healthy as you age is regularly swinging your arms, latest research demonstrates.

Scientists have discovered that doing a traditional Chinese arm-swinging exercise ‘Shuai Shou Gong’ three times a week improves your posture, walking speed and flexibility.

A total of 56 women in their 60s and 70s took part in the study, with half the group doing the 40-minute-long ancient exercise regime three times a week, while the other half carried on with their normal lives.

The results show that those in the arm swinging group found it easier to complete everyday activities – such as cooking and getting dressed – compared to those in the other group.

The participants who carried on with their normal lives were also more likely to experience a deterioration in their walking compared to those doing Shuai Shou Gong regularly.

Professor Neil Roberts, of Edinburgh University, noted: “These findings demonstrate that the gentle, rhythmic, whole-body sequence of movements of Shuai Shou Gong may be readily learned and enjoyed by older adults and improves general health and wellbeing.”

Shuai Shou Gong is good for muscles in the thighs, hips and around the shoulder, the study has reported.

“Using Shuai Shou Gong would confer many benefits in the general population,” said Professor James Goodwin from Exeter University.

He evaluated: “It would maintain quality of life, contribute to good mental health and may even slow down general ageing.”

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