Studies have found that the more physically active an elderly person is, the greater their odds for continuing to age in place at home. Regular exercise benefits a senior in so many ways, including improving balance, flexibility and coordination, strengthening their immune system, building lean muscle, reducing stress and promoting a better night’s sleep. If you’re looking after a senior in the Manatee County, FL, area, one of the exciting new ways you can help keep them more active is by introducing them to the SilverSneakers program.
What is SilverSneakers?
SilverSneakers is a nationwide fitness network that’s geared towards helping millions of older Americans enjoy healthier lives through exercise, social interaction and motivating fellow seniors. Membership provides seniors with access to workout opportunities at over 16,000 participating gyms, health clubs, parks, recreation centers and other facilities across the U.S., including more than a dozen in the Manatee County area. And, for seniors enrolled in a Medicare Advantage health plan, SilverSneakers costs them nothing to join!
SilverSneakers Activities in Manatee County
If your senior lives in Manatee County, there’s a SilverSneakers-affiliated facility nearby where they can take advantage of these various programs:
A Gym Access pass allows seniors to participate in several types of exercise activities including Yoga, Tai Chi and water aerobics classes, along with the use of walking tracks, weight machines, and even on-demand video workouts that can be done at home.
This membership level combines the aforementioned-Gym Access with many other activities, including community based (outside a gym) classes for participants of all fitness levels taught by certified SilverSneakers instructors, such as:
- SilverSneakers Classic. These classes are designed to increase muscle strength, balance and range-of-motion using a chair for seated exercises or support while standing.
- SilverSneakers Cardiofit. For more active seniors, as the name implies this class focuses on cardiovascular endurance combined with low-impact movements that are designed to improve a participant’s upper body and core strength.
- SilverSneakers Circuit. This workout includes upright, low-impact choreography combined with standing upper body strength and conditioning exercises using hand-held weights, an exercise ball and elastic tubing with handles. If needed, a chair is provided.
- SilverSneakers Yoga. Practiced for thousands of years, Yoga benefits a person’s body in so many ways, including stress reduction, muscle strength, flexibility and balance. SilverSneakers’ senior Yoga classes include the use of a chair, when needed, while also focusing on mental “cleansing” and restorative breathing techniques.
- SilverSneakers Go App. This convenient app can be downloaded onto a mobile device and then used to find participating SilverSneakers facilities, connect with fellow members, or access health and fitness information.
- SilverSneakers Community. This part of the program focuses on the positive social interactions it provides. Countless seniors have cultivated new friendships after connecting with others through various activities. Those newfound relationships and resulting support have helped an untold number of members stay more motivated to exercise. In addition, many seniors who are part of the Community get together outside of class to socialize.
How Caregivers Can Help
As a caregiver, there are several ways you can help a senior make the most of their membership opportunity, like:
- Initially helping them enroll in the program by visiting: www.silversneakers.com.
- Helping them locate gyms, other facilities and certified instructors that participate in the program.
- If they don’t drive, transporting a senior to and from their activities, or otherwise arranging reliable transportation for them.
- Showing them how to use the SilverSneakers Smartphone app and Community feature.
- Personalizing all their activities in a visible reminder format that they can post somewhere in their home, like on the fridge.
We Help At-Home Seniors in Manatee County Stay Active
Getting an elderly loved one to their activities can be difficult when you’re too busy or live far away. When you need a hand, call First In Care. Our fully licensed and insured caregivers will be happy to transport your senior to and from their exercise classes, and, with your permission, show them how to fully enjoy all the perks of a SilverSneakers membership. While in the home, our highly trained aides can also perform duties like light housework, personal hygiene, medication reminders, meal preparation and companionship.
And, all our family trusted home care services can be flexibly tailored in an affordable package that will restore your peace of mind. To learn more about First In Care, or to schedule a FREE in-home assessment in Manatee County, FL, please visit: www.firstincare.com now!