The idea of retirement as a time to sit on your front porch in a rocker has passed. These days, most seniors are opting for a more active retirement. Older adults are exploring new hobbies, learning new skills, pursuing old passions, and becoming more socially active than ever.
Pursuing hobbies doesn’t just keep you entertained. Plenty of research shows that fulfilling, engaging activities help older adults maintain and improve cognitive function, mood and mental health, and overall happiness. Senior living community hobbies are plentiful and, best of all, are designed with the older adult in mind.
If you’re a senior in retirement looking for hobby ideas, we have put together a list of 19 activities that run the gamut from indoor to outdoor, physical to intellectual, social to secluded, and everything in between. In fact, we offer many of these hobbies as part of the vibrant, active lifestyle our residents enjoy.
Indoor Hobbies for Seniors
The kitchen and dinner table play a huge role in our lives and memories. Many older adults are returning to the kitchen to learn new techniques, dabble with fresh and exciting ingredients, and explore the globe from the comfort of home. Instead of being a daily chore, cooking is a fantastic opportunity to bring friends and family together, entertain, and discover new favorite dishes.
2. Playing a Musical Instrument
Retirement is the perfect time to dust off your musical skills (or develop them if you’ve never explored them before). Many seniors choose to spend their time exercising their musical chops in community choirs or orchestras or simply jamming with friends on a Friday night.
Crocheting has enjoyed a renaissance thanks to the rise of the internet. Once you learn the technique, it’s fun and easy to create just about anything you can think of: blankets, clothes, little stuffed animals, fun embellishments for clothing, and so much more.
4. Board and Card Games
Game nights are an excellent way to spend time together, get a little competitive, and be social. Popular games include bunco, bridge, and many more. These days, you can even play games on the go with popular apps like Words With Friends and others.
5. Arts and Crafts
Many people enjoy using their hands to create beautiful and useful items like jewelry, pottery, mosaics, etc. Scrapbooking is one popular activity that is fun for children and adults alike. Arts and crafts can be created solo or with a group, making it a perfect hobby for both introverts and extroverts.
Outdoor Hobbies for Seniors
6. Hiking and Biking
The great outdoors offers so many opportunities to stay physically active, get some fresh air, and enjoy nature. Parks and nature trails provide solitude and scenic views, and many cities have bike trails that loop through the town and surrounding countryside. Freedom Village has beautiful trails that help our residents stay active and close to home.
Gardening is one of the most popular hobbies for seniors (and other ages) for many reasons. It’s a great low-impact form of exercise, produces beautiful and tangible results, and allows you to wield your creativity. Many senior living communities, like Freedom Village, have community gardens and gardening clubs, which are great ways to meet others who share your green thumb and can offer tips and tricks.
Health and Fitness Hobbies for Seniors
8. Tai Chi
The ancient martial art of tai chi combines thoughtful movement with meditation for a whole-body wellness experience. This type of low-impact exercise focuses on strengthening muscles, toning the body, and slowing down the mind. Among many others, this is one of the activities offered at Freedom Village and one of our most popular.
Golfing is popular among retirees, many of whom may have played for work or recreation in the past. It’s a sport that can be played solo or as a group and is always an opportunity for conversation, refreshments, and good, clean, and competitive fun.
Pickleball is a hugely popular sport that combines tennis, badminton, and pingpong. It’s a lower-intensity cardio workout that comes with a lot of laughs and a lot of fun. It’s an excellent way to stay active with friends or a loved one.
Much like golf, bowling is an all-ages, all-level sport with a significant social element to it. Bowling alleys range from the classic to high-end, and most have leagues you can watch or join. It can be a fun one-off event or developed into an ongoing hobby.
Social Hobbies for Older Adults
12. Clubs and Groups
Book clubs, cooking clubs, walking clubs, discussion groups … they’re all focused on one thing: bringing a group of people with similar interests together to do something enjoyable. The clubs and groups at Freedom Village cover a wide range from purely social (like dinner clubs) to educational and so much more.
13. Volunteering and Mentoring
Many seniors choose to give back to their communities through volunteering in their retirement. Research shows that volunteering improves mental and physical health, provides a sense of purpose, and is a great way to meet new people of all ages. Mentoring is another activity that provides innumerable benefits for both parties in a mentor-and-mentee relationship.
14. Lifelong Learning
Learning doesn’t stop when you reach a certain age. Many seniors choose to use their leisure time to expand their knowledge and broaden their minds. Active older adults can spend time learning a new language, diving into history, learning to write a book, or anything else that piques their interests. Plenty of courses are available online and through local universities to keep everyone engaged.
Many couples and friends finally have the time in retirement to travel to their heart’s content without the pressures of work, family, or pets. Whether traveling across town or the globe, traveling together is an excellent opportunity for new experiences, cultures, and interests.
Online Hobbies for Seniors
16. Solving Puzzles
Puzzle games are just a click away, thanks to mobile apps like Wordscapes, Candy Crush, and countless others. Solving puzzles is a great way to stay mentally sharp and keep your little gray cells active. Logic puzzles, sudoku, crosswords, and word searches are fun activities that can be fun (and sometimes a little addicting).
17. Video Games
Video games aren’t just for the grandkids anymore. With so many different gaming systems and types of games, seniors can find a video game for just about any interest. They can help you stay physically active, improve dexterity, sharpen your mind, or may prove to be just plain entertaining.
Podcasts are like radio shows, only better. You can find podcasts for every topic, hobby, or interest. Whether on a long drive, cleaning the house, running errands, or traveling on a plane, podcasts are a great way to immerse yourself in a story or a wealth of information and make the time fly by.
Many active older adults are tracing their family tree and learning about family history through genealogy research. Thanks to the online digitization of documents and sites like Ancestry.com, finding your ancestors’ stories has never been more accessible or more engaging.
Find Hobbies To Enrich Your Life at Freedom Village
If your idea of retirement means an engaging social life with like-minded individuals in a community filled with a wealth of amenities, you’ll love everything that’s offered at Freedom Village. Our Active Life Plan Community has beautiful surroundings, a vibrant population, a plethora of events and activities, and so many wellness opportunities so you can make your retirement exactly how you want it.
Contact us to learn more, or schedule a tour and experience our senior lifestyle for yourself.