What makes people satisfied with their retirement? Keeping busy, apparently. In fact, in the latest TIAA Voices of Experience survey, 76% of retirees who engaged in 10 or more activities reported being “very satisfied,” compared to 52% who engaged in one to four activities.
Ten activities? That sounds like a lot. But not for the women who participated in After55.com’s recent survey of senior living activities. At least 20% of our female survey takers, ages 50 to 89, were interested in these 10 activities.
Favorite Activities for Older Women
1. Exercise / Yoga
The favorite activity for women was exercise and yoga classes, chosen by 42% of survey participants. Getting exercise shouldn’t be a problem for residents in many of today’s senior living communities. Numerous 55+ communities in Phoenix and other major retirement centers are proud of their fitness centers and wellness programs.
2. Trips to Museums or Cultural Events
After a workout, women in retirement communities want to get out for trips to museums and cultural events. That was a choice of 35% of our survey participants. Fortunately, a lot of independent living facilities offer transportation for outings.
Immediately behind cultural outings was a good dip in the pool, with 34% of survey participants choosing swimming and water aerobics as desired activities. Again, senior living facilities recognize this interest. Retirement communities in Miami and similar sunny climates prominently feature pools, saunas and hot tubs.
4. Walking / Hiking
Next in the survey was walking and hiking, at 32%. The Arthritis Foundation concurs that this is a great activity for seniors to improve your bones, your heart, your mood and even your sleep.
5. Movie Nights
Sometimes you just need a quiet night in, and nothing beats watching a movie with your friends or family. That’s probably why 31% of female respondents said they would enjoy movie nights as a senior living activity.
6. Arts and Crafts
About 27% of women were interested in arts and crafts. Retirement, after all, is a great time to explore old passions like painting.
7. Singles Nights / Meet-and-Greets
With so many single older women in retirement communities, it’s not shocking that a large number of our survey respondents – 24% – were interested in singles nights and meet-and-greets. Fortunately, about 23% of male survey respondents were interested in singles nights, too!
Maybe dancing is what our female survey respondents want to be doing at those singles nights. About 23% were interested in this activity.
9. Educational Classes
Another way to stay mentally sharp is to sign up for educational classes, such as language learning. About 20% of the women in our survey seemed to agree.
10. Restaurant Outings
Tied with educational classes was restaurant outings, at 20%. A bonus for those women heading out for a meal: You can get great senior discounts at restaurants while you’re at it!
Your turn: What activities in senior living communities most interest you? Tell us in the comments.
Related: What Men Want in Retirement