Silver Sneakers Works to Improve the Quality of Life for Senior Citizens / by Brittney Hogan

It’s never too late to start your fitness journey, and people all across the country are taking that saying to heart. Gyms all over america are participating in a new preventative health program that makes a huge difference in the quality of life some of our society's most under appreciated demographic. 

Silver Sneakers is the leading exercise program for adults in America and has given senior citizens a chance to refocus on their physical wellness and a way to stay connected in a community. The classes are designed for older adult fitness and are covered by the participants insurance, many times at no extra cost. Smaller local gyms like TruSelf Sporting Club have also included full gym access into the Silver Sneakers program they offer.

"The thing is, most large big-box gyms have this program; 24Hour, LA Fitness, Curves, etc" explains TruSelf Fitness Manager, Christine Quilici, who helps to manage the Silver Sneakers schedule at the sporting club.  "Each approved location can pick what the users can participate in.  The reason that TruSelf is unique, is that we give the users full access to everything. It is not just limited access to classes or cardio only. They have use of all the equipment and services, just as if they were members." 

Yeah that's right, if you qualify to participate your insurance will cover the cost of these fitness classes and depending upon the gym's program policy, your insurance could cover the cost of your gym membership! Although the program was built with older adults in mind it is also a great way for people recovering from injury or illness to stay physically active and safe.

The benefits of this program extend beyond physical fitness. Retirement, the loss of friends and family and lack of mobility can leave many older, or injured people feeling alone. A study, published in the 2012 edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, showed that social isolation and feelings of loneliness are associated with a higher risk of mortality in adults age 52 and older. When acute symptoms for disease or illness begin to develop, it is the people around the future patient who notice changes in behavior or health that can lead to early detection. Isolated seniors are at the greatest risk of experiencing unnoticed deterioration and Silver Sneakers works to create a social safety net by offering group fitness classes to people at risk for isolation. Strong social bonds can also help to prevent depression and even lead to a more optimistic life for seniors. Silver Sneakers provides older adults with an opportunity to meet new people and to continue to strengthen the social bonds that contribute to a longer and more satisfying life. This program is just another great way fitness helps to build a community for people who may find themselves isolated. Click on the link to see if you or someone you know could qualify.

Don't qualify? Don't worry! There are tons of ways to connect to your local fitness community. Virago Fitness is proud to be the first business to ever host a Toys for Tots Foundation Virtual Race this September. The beauty of a virtual race is that you can participate any way you want from any location in America.

Not a runner? Swim for tots. Not a swimmer? Skateboard to help raise money for this amazing non-profit.

Is your ideal Virtual Race team scattered across the country? No problem. Anyone can register and participate from anywhere. The race starts in September and is open all month long, so your ideal team, no matter what time zone they are in, can participate whenever it is convenient for each member. 

When you register, you will receive a commemorative t-shirt and a medal that tells the world you care about the future of this country, knowing that 100% of the money raised will go to The Toys for Tots Foundation. Register today!