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A Workout Fit for Silver Sneakers

Strength and Motion Gold

The Fort Hill Activity Center is home to a couple Silver Sneakers programs, including The Strength and Motion Gold class, which brings together all types of movement from dancing to stretching to weight-lifting.

“The best part about this class [is] when I walk out of there, I feel so good about myself,” said Jeanne Prybylo.

You can find her taking part in the one-hour fitness class every Wednesday at Fort Hill.

“Obviously we’re working on strength, that’s where the weights and the bands come in but the motion is the range of motion and the constant movement,” said Group Exercise Coordinator, Kim Monti.  “A lot of times as you age, you get tighter in your shoulders and your hips.”

“[It’s] a nice blend of cardiovascular, some strength and toning, do the weights,” said Vanessa Liveris.  “It’s a total workout, very fulfilling.”

Functional Training

With what’s called “functional training,” this workout reflects movement that is done in every day life that may become more difficult with age.

“It’s really important all of us at any age to keep moving, to have stronger muscles, stronger bones,” said Monti.  “To have that range, that movement through all your joints.”  “A lot of people babysit their grandchildren so this helps keep them moving and active.  They’ve often said to me it’s easier to chase.  I can chase them wherever we’re going – in a park, in the mall, I can grab them. “

“The instructor that teaches the Strength and Motion is amazing!” said Mary Jo Hazard.  “First of all, she knows the body’s physiology, what stretches are important for us.  She connects it to different events in our lives where we might need to do different motions and she just make it fun!”

About the Silver Sneakers Program

While the participants certainly have a ball, what’s more is that this class and yoga are both part of the national Silver Sneakers program.

Included in many Medicare and supplemental insurance plans, Silver Sneakers covers the cost of thousands of fitness classes and gym memberships around the country for those 65 years and older.  It’s a way to encourage a more active lifestyle.

“If they had diabetes or if they have hypertension or high blood pressure, that they keep coming back to exercise in order to lesson the levels when they go to the doctor,” said Monti.  “They feel healthier, they feel stronger.”

This group encourages more local senior citizens to join them, especially if they are a Silver Sneakers member.

“As you get older, you tend to be more sedentary so it’s great to have all these people that are taking these classes,” said Liveris.”

“After being here one time one of the ladies mentioned ‘Oh, are you in silver sneakers?’  I find out more about it.  I had already paid for a full year but Silver Sneakers was in my insurance,” said Prybylo.  “They refunded the money.  I am now a silver sneakers member!”

Truly Life-Changing

Because of this class, Prybylo has lost almost 50 pounds and no longer needs to take her diabetes medicine.

“Life is too short,” she said.  “And if you’re going to sit around grow old, you’re cheating yourself.  You really need to get motivated and moving.“

“Every person in my class, in my heart feel, they are very inspirational.  They push past what they never thought they could do,” said Monti.

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