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Six Jobs Retirees Can Do While Maintaining an Active Lifestyle

Oct 04 2016

By Jim Vogel

Retiring from the day-to-day workforce often means a reduction in physical activity for older Americans, and while that can be a good thing for those ready for some rest, others may feel the need to maintain a more active lifestyle. When there is also a need for part-time work after retirement—for extra money or just for personal fulfillment—the two can be married if you know where to look.


There are several jobs out there that require some physical activity and could be adjusted to fit almost any schedule. Here are six of the best choices for older Americans and retirees who are looking to stay fit while earning a little extra cash.



Many stores need greeters, customer service associates, cashiers, and seasonal help throughout the year. Chain stores like Walmart, Target, and Kmart offer competitive pay for holiday help and often give employee discounts, which might make the busy days worthwhile. Retail jobs require a lot of time on your feet, but during peak business hours you’ll likely be doing a lot of walking and that’s a great way to stay active.


Tour Guide at Local Attractions

If you’re lucky enough to live in a historic town, there are likely several attractions in need of tour guides and hosts/hostesses. You can also check out local museums, national parks, universities, hotels, and even private companies for job openings on sites like Monster.com. Some of the offerings there include a need for tour guides on river boats and craft beer companies, which often host tours of their facilities.


Real Estate

Do you have business contacts from a past career that you could reach out to as a potential client base? Do you enjoy meeting new people? If you answered “Yes!” to either (or both) of those questions, then becoming a real estate agent might be a great way for you to make some extra dough in your retirement. While it does require some training, working as a real estate agent will allow you to make your own hours and is a great way to put to good use any sales, negotiation, and customer service skills you fine-tuned during your pre-retirement career.


Newspaper Delivery

While it’s not common to see a paperboy pedaling down a suburban street at dawn anymore, there is still a need for newspaper delivery services. Most publishers pay per route and expect employees to assemble and bundle their own papers, load them up in a vehicle, and drive them to their destination, such as a coffee shop or drugstore. This would be a perfect job for a night owl, since deliveries are usually expected after midnight on the day the paper is released.


Merchandising for Retailers

Many retailers have a need for merchandisers to oversee their products, and while the job varies from company to company, there are some great part-time options that afford a flexible schedule. One such company is Hallmark, which hires merchandisers to travel to nearby stores and oversee their greeting cards and other merchandise. While there is some degree of physical activity required—lifting 30-50 pounds on occasion and using ladders and stepstools—these part time jobs offer hourly pay and reimburse mileage.


Along a similar route, some companies hire inventory specialists, either to come in and work in the back room—often tagging merchandise as it is delivered—or to physically take inventory on a small handheld computer. If you are organized and good with numbers, one of these jobs may be right for you. RGIS.com is a great place to start; this company sends employees to different retail stores to conduct inventory, often overnight or when the store is closed.


Sports Coach/Referee

If you love sports and have experience in the world of football, soccer, or baseball, you might consider becoming a coach or ref for a local team. The schedule isn’t as flexible with this job as some of the others because you’ll need to put in some hours planning and work around game and practice times, but coaching youths can be a fun, rewarding, and active job. Check out Indeed.com for job listings in your area.


Staying active after retirement is widely agreed upon as a way to stay healthy and make the most of your golden years. Finding a job that incorporates exercise is a great way to take care of yourself and have a little fun while making some extra cash.

Jim and his wife created ElderAction after becoming caregivers for their aging parents. Jim is the co-founder of ElderAction, which aims to provide useful information to aging seniors.