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I've also noticed that for some reason many elderly take a liking to chair yoga (as opposed to chair exercises). Who knew!?!
I know how much I've improved quickly using hand weights (now up to 8# size) and mom gets PT at day care using 3# ankle weights (seated, lifting from knee). Anything to keep them mobile, strength in legs, able to help you help them stand is great. I think over the years Mom has gone from helplessly weak (ie, when in hospital, after broken hip) to strong again several times.
The thing that gets her to move without instruction or nagging is just watching a good classical music/ballet video (ie, Andre Rieu's English language videos like the Rockerfeller Center or new Australia DVD) and some select ballets. She'll conduct along enthusiastically, stomp her feet in time to music.
Walking per se means I have to be beside her with gait belt or hands-on. I don't know if I'll ever trust her to walk again by herself, or rise from a chair by herself. She CAN do it, yeah, probably 90% of the time. The 10% chance of fall will put her in a nursing home probably.