i will be honest. I am nearly 50y/o and not in tip top shape either. I have not owned a bike since I was 12y/o. I want to buy a bike. I am looking at the cruiser bikes. Most come with coaster brakes. I am not sure what to buy. I am new to biking, so I don't know. I have heard more positives about handle brakes but also heard a lot of things could go wrong, and what if I get stranded somewhere? What would I do? Please advise. Sorry if I am rambling.
There's a small chance you don't have as much hand/arm strength as you used to. A coaster brake provides a way to slow while leaving your arms free to focus on steering.
That said, a coaster brake is a rear brake only. The best stopping happens with the front brake, so ideally you'd have both, a coaster for the rear and a hand brake lever for the front.
Talk to your lbs (local bike store). Most will help you and not try to sell you more than you need. Avoid cheap department store bikes (bso). With hand brakes you have two so there is not a single point of failure and they are very reliable. If you are more comfortable with coaster brakes then that is good option also.