An activity that we offer at Bethany Village is Silver Sneakers for an exercise program. On our weekly calendar, Silver Sneakers occurs every Monday and Wednesday and then Thursday, Friday and Saturday is morning exercise. We started the Silver Sneakers program about a year ago and it has flourished! We offer the class from 10:00am to roughly around 10:45am. We offer the program to the assisted living residents as part of the wellness initiative. The supplies needed for this program are as follows, hand held free weights, resistance bands and small lightweight exercise balls. The weights range from 1 pound to 4 pounds for the residents. And the resistance bands are color coded from yellow to blue, yellow meaning the least resistant to blue being the most resistant.
Before the residents’ start entering the room, I make sure the room is set up beforehand. I lay all of the resistance bands out on the table and make sure the bag of exercise balls is out too. If the chairs are not already in a large circle, I will place the chairs accordingly in a circle. Also, I will make sure the pitcher of water is filled with cold water and that we have enough cups for that morning. It is important that during exercise we stay hydrated at all times. Usually after we finish the weights, before moving on to the bands or the balls I go around the circle and ask if anyone needs a drink of water. Some residents’ will bring their own water bottle to Silver Sneakers.
The Silver Sneakers exercise program meets the physical interest of the dimension of wellness that we use here at Bethany. By having Silver Sneakers and other exercise programs that we offer on the calendar every week. We promote taking care of our body to maintain and improve strength and flexibility. Making positive choices to nourish our body so that it can be as healthy as possible. When we first started out having Silver Sneakers the class was small about six to eight people. Now we have around ten to twenty residents participating in the program frequently. During the class we use the weights for bicep curls and arm raises. We use the balls to get our hands working by squeezing the ball with our fingers and pretending to open up a jar by twisting the ball. Then we use the resistance bands to strengthen our upper body and lower body. We end the class with relaxation techniques. By stretching out our arms, rolling our shoulders and taking in nice slow deep breathes. It is an enjoyable morning for the residents and it is a type of program that will get them awake and moving for the day!