Providing diverse programming for everyone in your community is important, as it shows that your parks and recreation organization is an inclusive one. While the elderly community in your area may not be as active as those who are younger and more agile, there are nonetheless a large number of options when it comes to providing interesting fitness programming for older generations.
Here are some things to consider, when introducing fitness classes for the elderly community in your area.
Studies have proven that exercise is a great way to prevent the development or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s. Your organization can provide a safe space for the elderly in your community to be active and offer such programs as Aquafit, line dancing, yoga, tai chi, and more. It is important to ensure that your instructors have had experience in teaching and aiding the elderly and it is especially imperative that the instructors have their first aid certification.
Group fitness classes are another great way to get the elderly community to get involved. Low-impact fitness classes where they can invite their friends will act as further encouragement for them to attend class. For those who are a little more active, racquetball or pickleball are great programs to offer.
Ensure It’s Right for Them
As mentioned before, having qualified instructors teach fitness classes for the elderly is hugely important. Not only does having teachers who are experienced with working alongside older patrons make for a more inviting and comfortable experience for the elderly, it can also make a big difference in terms of customer service. As with any other demographic, your organization may encounter patrons who are a bit more particular and difficult to serve; an instructor who has experience working with the elderly may be able to better nullify such issues in a quick and professional manner.
Even though the fitness classes that you offer may be low-impact, some elderly patrons may push themselves too hard and get injured. Having someone at your organization that can respond immediately is necessary to prevent any serious or fatal instances.
It is essential to ensure that your programming limits the age of those who attend class—such as ensuring that they are 65+ only—so that these programs are truly dedicated for the elderly community. Be prepared to receive members who have varying degrees of physical abilities, if you want to maximize potential class attendees.
Make It Fun
At the end of the day, the most important thing is to get the elderly involved. Making it fun and inclusive is a great way to ensure their involvement. Bridge, mah jong, art lessons are other excellent programs that allow the elderly community to meet one another while also engaging in activities that stimulate their minds. Some evidence has shown that such lifestyle choices as learning new things and making new social connections can help further prevent a number of conditions and diseases.
Ensuring that the elderly community is represented and that everyone in it is included should be the main objective of every parks and recreation organization. To help you better connect your community, PerfectMind’s cloud-based parks and recreation software is a terrific solution. With it, you can manage all aspects of your facility; operations, marketing and financing, and reduce time spent on office functions. Learn more about PerfectMind’s facility management software here.