If the pandemic’s put you in a fitness rut, doing the same old routine every day—or you don’t even have a rut to climb out of—you are in luck. Wednesday, May 26, is Senior Health & Fitness Day, an all-day virtual event with Senior Planet locations around the country.
Ready Set, Sweat!
All Senior Planet locations will host virtual fitness and wellness activities (check the event listings here for specific times and topics).
“We’ve built a robust wellness community over the past year…”
-Fiona Adams, Associate Director, OATS
Senior Fitness Day will culminate in Senior Planet’s participation in a special event, National Senior Health & Fitness Day ®, from 3-5 p.m. EST. It’s an annual event (learn more here) for older adults hosted by the Mature Market Resource Center, a national information clearinghouse for older adults. “We’ve built a robust wellness community over the past year, so we thought it would be fun to take part in this annual event,” says Fiona Adams, Associate Director for OATS (Older Adult Technology Services), which sponsors Senior Planet.
That robust Senior Planet wellness community already hosts a variety of online fitness options, from Morning Stretch to Chair Yoga, Balance/Strength and Tai Chi, among other classes.
The Grand Finale of Senior Fitness Day
After the various classes hosted online by different Senior Planet locations (the locations list is here), the grand finale starts at 3 p.m EST. Three instructors will offer some fun, new fitness opportunities — ballet barre, ballroom dancing and Reiki. “The sessions will each be 30 minutes long and there will be a 5-10 minute intro and conclusion,” Adams says. “In between the sessions there will be a few minutes of transition time.”
As you plan your schedule for May 26, here is a sneak peek and some information on the three workouts. If you’re already a bit nervous, we include a confidence-building pro tip for each.
This class combines ballet-inspired moves and elements of Pilates, says instructor Andrea Hancock, (at right), a functional aging fitness specialist. The workout will be good for balancing and emphasizes good posture. “As we get older, posture is very important,” she says, as it decreases pressure on your back. The session will also be good for toning, both lower and upper body. Don’t worry if there’s no ballet barre in your house. Use the kitchen counter or the back of the sofa, Hancock says. (Much better than a chair, which can be less secure.) Tutus are not mandatory, but we found this advice about what to wear to an adult ballet class. Time: 3:45-4:15. Pro tip: “If you have ever done yoga, strength training or Pilates, you can do it. Go at your own pace.”
With the pandemic subsiding, it can’t hurt to brush up your dancing skills so you’re ready for that unexpected invite, and Abraham Cespedes is your guru for the day. Partner is fun, but optional. T: 3:15-3:45. Pro tip: Visualize yourself at a long-ago dance, and remember not to stare at your feet.
This hands-on natural healing, originating in Japan, helps people harness their universal energy, says instructor Cas Castro, a Reiki master (at left). “We all have that energy, and we can learn to become conduits to that energy, to heal ourselves and others. A Reiki master can open up those energy channels.” Reiki (RAY key) can produce a deep state of relaxation, dissolve energy blockages and tension and ease pain, according to The Cleveland Clinic. Time: 4:15-4:45. Pro tip: Just have an open mind, Castro says. “Be open to holistic types of therapies.”
Adams says the goals of the day are to promote the importance of regular physical activity and to show what organizations like Senior Planet are doing to improve the health of older adults….but there’s more to it than that for Senior Planet participants, she adds. “They can expect to break a sweat and have fun in the process!’
There’s no need to register in advance for Senior Fitness Day activities, just check the Senior Health & Fitness Day page on the Senior Planet website. Need more info? Check your email for updates on this exciting and fun event!
This article offered by Senior Planet and Older Adults Technology Services is for informational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.
The programs Senior Planet offered during this pandemic have certainly helped me and i am sure many many more grateful AARP members. I hope you are planning to continue the programs.
I have done programs from every location offeredand find the instructors top not ch and participants friendly.