Twenty energetic adults jumped roped, jogged, did the breaststroke and sparred like prize fighters, all from the comfort of their chairs. Welcome to Workout Wednesday at St. Ann Center.
The exercise group meets weekly in the Bucyrus Campus’ spacious Intergenerational Park. Clients from all the Adult Day Care units are invited to keep fit while they sit during this fun half-hour session.
“I think exercise is essential to our physical and mental health—especially during COVID-19,” says Intergenerational Activities Supervisor Monica Yarn. Experts agree it’s important for older adults to remain active to help improve their overall immunity, particularly now when they are at greater risk of complications from the virus.
It’s hard not to start moving when Monica turns on a playlist of music to exercise by. “We call them our power songs,” she says as she leads the group in shoulder rolls and leg lifts synchronized to a pulsing beat. “Let’s get our blood pumping!”
The workout has been carefully researched with elders and people with disabilities in mind. “The exercises are adaptable for people with mobility issues,” Monica explains, and are aimed at improving strength, balance and mood.
Several of the childcare classes are getting in on the action, too. Monica has put together a special exercise session just for the children and their teachers. “While the kids work off their energy,” she says, “the adult clients watch at a safe distance and cheer them on.”