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Boomers have joint replacements to stay active

Though many adults are more active than their parents generation, the increased wear and tear on their joints is going to lead to an increase in knee and hip replacements, experts say. In 2009, people between the ages of 45 and 64 accounted for about 40 percent of the roughly 900,000 such surgeries and by 2030, analysts believe that knee replacements alone will rise to about 994,000 - all thanks to baby boomers, the AFP reports.

In years past, many joint replacements were performed on older adults who needed the surgery to maintain their ability to walk. Such is no longer the case. Now patients are looking to get back to their normal routine and stay active after they recover. Though some doctors have advocated picking up lower-impact exercises after the surgery, many, like avid runner Dick Beardsley, are able to do everything they used to.

Sixty two-year-old Beardsley, who has had both his knees replaced in the last three years, runs about 70 to 80 miles a week and has managed to keep up his training for the Boston Marathon.

"The first six to eight weeks (after surgery) are brutal," he told the news agency. "But I would keep at it, run a mile ... eventually I got back to running the same pace I was before the knee surgery."

Despite success stories like Beardsley, there are some sports that are better-suited to adults than others. One of the fastest-growing activities in the age group has been pickleball, which is a variation on tennis and is easier on joints. Homeowners at Del Webb Naples have easy access to pickleball clubs and classes as well as bowling, bocce and the nearby Panther Run Golf Club. 

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