Life after retirement is an exciting time to explore new hobbies and be inspired by new passions. Whether you get in touch with old favorites or discover untapped interests with your partner or your friends, having a hobby is important at every age but especially as we grow older. From encouraging physical activity to giving the brain a workout, socializing plays a role in our quality of life and even our longevity and is a cornerstone of the Sunrise experience.
Research shows that older adults who are socially active are more likely to follow their doctor’s advice for routine health screenings, taking medications, and other self-care necessities. This can lead to improved physical, emotional, and mental health.
Unfortunately, the opposite is also true. The dangers of isolation for older adults are well established, too. Seniors who spend too much time alone are more likely to become sedentary and develop health problems as a result. Diabetes, depression, stroke, heart disease, obesity, and high blood pressure are a few conditions that are more common among people who suffer from isolation.
If you are looking for new hobbies to enjoy during retirement, Sunrise is here to help. This guide is designed to help adults over 60 explore new pastimes, including some that don’t cost anything.
Finding New Hobbies After 60
One of the best ways to find a new hobby is to think back to what you loved doing as a child or young adult. Did you dream of playing the drums or guitar? Maybe you always wanted to learn how to tap dance or ride a horse? Sit down with pen and paper and give careful thought to the dreams you had that may have been sidelined after you started working or raising a family.
This list of ideas might help you connect with a hobby you’ve never considered before:
- Pickleball: If you’re looking for a fun, social and friendly sport to engage in, pickleball is an easy game that combines elements of tennis, Ping-Pong and badminton. Played both indoors and outdoors, this sport can be enjoyed in doubles or singles. All you need is a paddle, a small plastic ball with holes, and a badminton-sized court. At some of our Sunrise communities, residents enjoy an afternoon game with friends at newly installed pickleball courts.
- Learn photography: While cell phones have turned many of us into frequent photographers, we aren’t necessarily taking quality shots. You can probably find a good used camera on Facebook Marketplace. Best Buy also has refurbished cameras available online or in a local store. To learn how to use it, check out free videos on YouTube or the manufacturer’s website.
- Explore historical sites: Depending on where you live, you may have been driving past sites with historical significance for years without really paying attention. A favorite pastime for many people is touring regional and national historical sites. Take time to slow down and learn more about your city, state, and country. Suggest it as an outing and make it a Sunrise activity.
- Watercolor painting: Taking a class at your local community college, senior center, or museum gives you an opportunity to meet new friends while also taking on a new skill. Many include all supplies in their fees, so you don’t have a lot of upfront costs for a hobby you aren’t quite sure you’ll like yet. If you don’t know of any in your area, your Sunrise team can help you find one.
- Learn a new language: Not only is this a fun way to spend your time, it’s a great way to give your brain a workout. If you can’t find a local class to join, sites like Babbel or Duolingo are good options. They even have free trials to help you get started.
- Master the art of gardening: Gardening is a pastime you can engage in at every age. From window boxes and raised beds to vegetable and cut flower beds, there are many options. You can find workshops at an area botanical garden or garden center to help you learn the basics. A few good online resources for learning include Garden Answer and Jack Barnwell Design. If you decide you want to learn more, the American Horticulture Society’s Master Gardener page has great resources to connect with.
- Take up bird watching: It can be as simple as investing in a good quality bird book and pair of binoculars at first. Your local park or botanical garden might have programs or tours to help you learn more about the feathered friends in your area. Many Sunrise communities have covered porches, gazebos and patios where you can spot birds without leaving the comfort of your home.
- Become a Road Scholar®: If you’ve always dreamt of spending your retirement years traveling, you might be interested in the Road Scholar program. Geared toward older adults, it offers travel opportunities that include learning vacations, volunteering for a cause, and much more!
Live Life to the Fullest at Sunrise
Residents of Sunrise Senior Living communities have a rich variety of activities and events to participate in every day. And with someone else handling the household chores, like housekeeping and lawn care, there’s time to participate in as many as you choose! Use this contact form to learn more details about the Sunrise experience.