It’s Never Too Late to Get in Shape
The idea your physical fitness is crucial to your overall wellness couldn’t be truer. That’s the easy part. The hard part lies in overcoming the fears and misconceptions regarding what it takes to put yourself on the path. For seniors, especially those who’ve overlooked their conditioning, the road to optimal fitness can seem daunting. That’s where Silver Sneakers comes in.
The Medicare Advantage
Medicare has come a long way in the last 25 years. A perfect example would be the advent of Medicare Advantage plans. For those unfamiliar, Medicare Advantage is a health insurance plan that provides Medicare benefits through a private sector insurer. These plans are both an alternative to the traditional fee-for-service Medicare plan, and a means for Medicare to benefit from the efficiencies and cost savings achieved in the private sector.
Traditional Medicare only provides for inpatient hospital services and outpatient treatment. Medicare Advantage plans are generally far more comprehensive. They not only cover these services, but they also include a wide variety of other benefits. One potential benefit is an included membership in a program like Silver Sneakers, a combination virtual workout tool, gym membership and personal trainer. Here’s how it works.
If you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, start by checking its benefits, or consulting one of the plan’s agents to see if Silver Sneakers is part of your plan. Another option is to log on to SilverSneakers.com and take part in their instant membership check. Once your membership is confirmed, you are one step closer to improving your physical fitness.
Membership Has Its Privileges
A clever ad slogan of the 90s, it applies perfectly to the benefits associated with a Silver Sneakers membership:
Whatever the reason, it may not be easy for you to get to a gym. With Silver Sneakers you don’t have to. SilverSneakers.com not only provides a vast variety of LIVE online classes, but it also features a robust video library of classes, individual work outs and instructional how-to videos about all things fitness related. This means limitless access to information and services, all from the privacy of your own home.
If getting yourself out of the house is more your speed, you’ll be happy to know your Silver Sneakers membership is honored at over 15,000 participating fitness locations nationwide. From gyms to community centers and the like, there is no shortage of location options available to you within the area you live.
No matter your level of fitness or physical limitations, Silver Sneakers has classes for everyone. All are led by supportive instructors, specially trained to improve your fitness while accommodating your needs and making sure you exercise safely.
Healthy Living Discounts
From nutritionists to physical therapists, there’s a variety of healthy lifestyle professionals who offer discounts to Silver Sneakers members. In addition, you can receive retail discounts of up to 40% on various health-related products and fitness equipment.
A Fitness App
Silver Sneakers Go is a simple to use fitness app you can download to any smartphone. It allows you to find your fitness locations, as well as schedule and track your workouts. It not only organizes you, but it also holds you accountable.
But the best part about Silver Sneakers (if it’s part of your Medicare Advantage plan) is you get all the membership benefits at no extra cost to you.
So Why Get Started?
If you’re no stranger to the gym and fitness training, this next part isn’t necessarily for you. Rather, it is intended for those who’ve yet to embark on a fitness plan, or maybe taken a few years off from the gym.
The first thing you should know is it’s never too late to get started… or started again. The mere fact you’re reading this article says you’re interested in living your best life. So, congratulate yourself for that.
The next thing you should know is that no matter your age or physical condition, the benefits of exercise can be realized almost immediately. What benefits, you ask? Exercise has been shown to improve mental health and well-being, strengthen social ties and improve cognitive function. Not to mention that statistically you are helping to prevent diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. You are also lowering your risk for a fall.
Now let’s talk about how much better you’re going to feel… and not just physically. Exercise has been shown to increase endorphins, also known as the “feel good” hormone. This not only acts as a stress reliever, but it also leaves you feeling happy and satisfied. Additionally, exercise has been linked to improved sleep, which is critical for older adults who oftentimes suffer from insomnia or less than optimal sleep patterns.
Lastly, exercise is somewhat of a gateway to other healthy lifestyle choices. Studies have shown an increase in exercise promotes things like healthier eating choices, drinking in moderation, increased medical checkups, a refrain from unhealthy practices like smoking and a reduction of overall sedentary time.
You may be asking yourself, what type of exercises are suitable for me? You’ll be surprised to know the answer is somewhat limitless and depends far less on age than it does your desire and open-mindedness. From walking and swimming to aerobics and Pilates, all exercises can be adapted to suit your physical needs and limitations. That’s what your trained instructors are there for. It’s always a good idea to consult your physician first, but remember, Silver Sneakers is part of a health insurance plan for a reason and the reason is that regular exercise keeps you healthy and vital well into your golden years.
So, what are you waiting for? Log on to SilverSneakers.com today and find out if you are eligible for a free membership. Taking advantage of this opportunity is literally the first step to enjoying a more fulfilling life. Don’t you think you deserve it? The best of luck to you… and happy exercising.