Exercise Your Mind and Body to Reduce the Risks for Alzheimer’s Disease

Oct 21, 2011
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Improved fitness can be achieved by everyone, regardless of age or physical condition, when one follows an exercise program. However many of today’s seniors are out of shape and face many serious health concerns like Alzheimer’s disease. Ed’s daughter who lives in Texas found Right Fit on the web. Ed was diagnosed with Dementia.  And she felt strongly that exercise was a treatment to help improve brain function and a whole lot more! Back then I wasn’t prepared nor understood the many social, physical and mental challenges these individuals and families’ face daily dealing with this disease. I remember Ed’s first class vividly; he was frightened and hesitant. Now two years later he continues on a twice a week regimen of vigorous one- on- one training. I admire Ed’s courage to battle this disease and the support and dedication of his family.

I wanted to explore the possibility of organizing a group class for individuals with Alzheimer’s and their caretakers so I met with some administrators from Aging Care Connections. Aging Care Connections (located in Lagrange) provides social services to adults ages 60 and older and their families to enhance their ability to remain independent and productive in their communities. Together we organized the Center’s first class offering called Sensible Fitness. This 50-minute class was designed to utilize inexpensive household items for exercise equipment and incorporate a “can do” progression of fitness activities and exercises. Since then I have sat down with Karen Meyer, Contributing Reporter for WLS-TV, Alzheimer’s Association Greater Illinois Chapter and Senior Services at Waukegan Township Park Place to discuss the importance of fitness programs for today’s seniors.

I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to participate next week on a panel at the Club Industry 2011 Conference for fitness business professionals. This panel will share experiences for building special population businesses. I believe exercise is the medicine and therapy to fight Alzheimer’s disease. I know all of us will do whatever’s necessary to make sure a “sensible fitness” class is available at every senior facility and health club in the country! There is too much to learn and share with this special population. Let’s cure this disease in a sensible way.

Author: suzanne