Aug 24, 2022

The 7 Most Popular Hobbies for Seniors

Manny Cominsky

One of the best parts of retirement is all the free time that you have to pursue your old hobbies or pick up some new ones. From traveling the world to learning about a new subject to playing your favorite sport like golf or pickleball, leaving the grind of the working world behind lets you spend your time only doing those things that you love. For those moving to active adult, senior living, or other planned communities, keeping up with your hobbies can be easy as many communities not only offer resort-style amenities, they also provide access to rich cultural programs and experiences. But regardless of whether you choose to spend your retirement in a planned community or not, you’ll greatly enrich your retirement by keeping up with a hobby or two (or more!). Below, find some of the most popular hobbies we’re hearing about every single day!


The granddaddy of all retirement hobbies (no pun intended). There’s a reason that for so many Americans the iconic image of retirement is playing golf with friends, or relaxing at the course following a round. Golf’s popularity is easy to explain. First, there are numerous health benefits as golf provides a no-contact sport that works every muscle and provides for a morning or afternoon full of amazing light cardio. Did you know that if you walk an 18-hole golf course you’ll cover roughly 5 miles and burn nearly 2000 calories. Golf also provides an amazing social element. While all hobbies have their associated social groupings, golf clubhouses and organized leagues provide ready-made social environments where you can meet countless other like minded retirees.

Golf is an amazing retirement hobby as it combines outdoor exercise with a great social community.


Whether you plan on traveling around the corner or around the globe, retirement is a great time to visit all those destinations you might not have had time for when you were spending your weeks working or raising a family. One particularly popular method of traveling for seniors is to travel the country in an RV, stopping at small towns, monuments, and attractions that might be difficult or impossible to get to traveling by air. The flexible schedule that comes with retirement not only means that you can get away in the first place, it can also help you save money by traveling at non-peak times. Speaking of saving money on retirement travel, make sure to take advantage of any memberships you may have. For example, AARP membership allows people to save money on travel-related expenses like hotels and car rentals.


One of the most important things to do in order to have a healthy and active retirement is to stay in shape. And while it may be new for many people, one of the best ways to stay in shape as you age is yoga. Yoga is an excellent exercise for seniors for a variety of reasons. First, Yoga allows strength and flexibility training while being low impact and not requiring the use of complicated equipment or trips to the gym. Another thing that makes Yoga particularly good for seniors is that because yoga focuses on increasing balance (particularly by strengthening core muscles), practicing yoga can help decrease your risk of falling which can be incredibly important as you age.

One of the most underrated benefits of yoga for seniors is that it can help prevent falls by improving balance.

Educational Opportunities

While it might not sound like your traditional hobby, there are a host of educational opportunities that open up to seniors in retirement. You may think your college days are behind you once you hit retirement, but many state universities allow older adults to take one or more classes for free during the semester. For example, South Carolina residents over the age of 60 can take classes tuition free at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, South Carolina. This is just one of the many examples of educational opportunities that are provided for seniors at public institutions, from universities to libraries to community centers. Along with these publicly-available options, many planned communities also offer educational experiences in the forms of book clubs, speaker series, and educational trips.


If you like the idea of spending more time in nature, but have never considered yourself a particularly outdoorsy person, then birdwatching might be the perfect new hobby for you. Birdwatching gives you an amazing reason to get out and about in nature in a way that provides some amazing exercise, but is still low-impact and easy on the body. Hiking is a great way to stay in shape as you age, and birdwatching is an amazing reason to get out on hikes. In addition to all the outdoor benefits, birdwatching is also a fascinating intellectual hobby in its own right. With countless amazing books on the subject, taking up birdwatching will not only give you plenty of great reasons to get out and about in nature, it will also give you an interesting area to study and read about when you’re ready to get off your feet!

When you take up birdwatching you'll always have a great reason to go on a hike and explore the great outdoors.


One incredibly popular pastime for seniors is volunteering. In fact, seniors are one of the most active age groups of volunteers in the entire country, contributing countless hours every year to a wide range of volunteer organizations. For many retired seniors, volunteering allows them to use the skills and knowledge they gained during a lifetime of work and use it to help those in need. Not only do retirees make for amazing volunteers, but volunteering can also bring particular benefits to seniors. Not only does volunteering provide a social community, a particular benefit for seniors who often need and benefit from increased social interaction, it also provides an amazing opportunity to exercise not only your muscles but also your brain by actively taking part in all the problem-solving that often comes with volunteer opportunities. 


Another popular hobby that brings particular benefits to seniors is gardening. Gardening is an amazing hobby for seniors as it is not only a fun and interesting hobby in its own right, but it also can have important benefits for wellness. Much like with a hobby like birdwatching, gardening opens people up to the rich world of science and information on plants and how they grow, providing the opportunity for endless hours of research and learning. In addition, gardening gets you out and about and in the sun, both working your muscles and making sure that you get important vitamin D. Finally gardening is a great way to make sure your house is filled with plenty of healthy fruits and vegetables, as proper nutrition is incredibly important to maintain as you age. 

Whatever you’re looking to do in your retirement, we want to help you get there. Sunbound is the best way to pay for senior living. If you want to learn more about how Sunbound can help make senior living more affordable for residents and easier to manage for communities, email us at or request a demo here. Sunbound is on a mission to make senior living more affordable for everyone.

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