Health and Fitness Information for Mature Adults 

April 20, 2009

Table of Contents

  • Show and Tell (Introduction to special issue)
  • What's Nu from NuStep? (Recumbent cross trainer)
  • Helping Social Work Work (The Institute for Geriatric Social Work)
  • A Call to Service (VolunteerMatch)
  • Parkinson's Disease Foundation (Excellent free information)
  • Fall Prevention Technology (HUR Health & Fitness Equipment)

Show and Tell

Aging in America, the annual conference of the National Council on Aging and the American Society on Aging, took place March 15-19 in Las Vegas. Officers from the American Senior Fitness Association (SFA) were on hand to accept the 2009 Best Practices in Health Promotion and Wellness Award from the National Council on Aging's Health Promotion Institute. And that's not all they did! With hundreds of educational sessions available, SFA attendees soaked up new ideas, new approaches, and the latest in aging-related research. In addition, they visited numerous exhibits, which filled a vast convention hall in the Paris Las Vegas Hotel. This issue of Experience! showcases several of the most interesting exhibits.


What's Nu from NuStep?

If your older adult fitness facility has limited space for exercise machines, then you need high-quality, versatile equipment that economizes your floor space while "doing it all." In fact, whether or not space constraints are at issue, NuStep has something you should see: its new T5XR recumbent cross trainer.

Richard Newton, active living consultant for NuStep, demonstrated the T5XR during the Aging in America conference. It provides a total body workout and features senior-friendly specifications. For example, its low step-through design -- in addition to wheelchair-height seating -- eases entry and exit. It has an ergonomically designed, large seat and an adjustable reclining seat back. Its drive-train features low-inertia startup and user-controlled step length. The arms have ergonomically shaped hand grips with variable distance between them. The pedals feature oversized, cushioned foot surfaces with soft heel cups to secure the feet, as well as NuStep's Flex Foot System for dorsi/plantar flexion.

The console is sophisticated and multifunctional, yet easy to use. The overall design is contemporary, durable, and easy to keep clean. For more information on NuStep's accessible and supportive T5XR recumbent cross trainer, click on www.nustep.com.


Helping Social Work Work

The Institute for Geriatric Social Work (IGSW) is part of Boston University's School of Social Work. IGSW is dedicated to strengthening the workforce for an aging society through educational innovation, workforce change, and research. It's representatives at the Aging in America conference answered questions and provided information about IGSW educational opportunities on topics ranging from older adult nutrition, to pain management, to dementia, to spirituality in aging, and more. Elise Beaulieu, IGSW's project manager of curriculum, discussed the Institute's comprehensive Certificate in Aging educational program with American Senior Fitness Association principals.

IGSW courses are available in an interactive online format or as a series of articles that can be downloaded, printed, and read when convenient (after which students must take an online post-assessment in order to receive credit). SFA Advanced Qualification professionals can use IGSW courses to meet their continuing education requirements. For more information, click on www.bu.edu/igsw.


A Call to Service

Some of the most cheerful faces at the Aging in America conference belonged to VolunteerMatch exhibitors, including Sarah Christian, its director of strategic partnerships who provided SFA officials with an overview of VolunteerMatch services. VolunteerMatch helps connect thousands of valuable volunteers to important work that needs to get done throughout the nation.

Boomer Volunteer Engagement, a program of VolunteerMatch, provides current boomer research applicable to volunteer engagement, workplans and worksheets, guidance for measuring results, and a process for building organizational success -- in other words, "Everything you need to engage boomer volunteers!" For more information, click on www.volunteermatch.org.


Parkinson's Disease Foundation

Another useful contact that American Senior Fitness Association president Janie Clark made on SFA members' behalf during the Aging in America conference was with Jeanne Rosner, the director of the Parkinson's Information Service (PINS), which is part of the Parkinson's Disease Foundation. Ms. Rosner is a very friendly and helpful individual, and so is the program that she directs.

PINS operates the only national toll-free helpline for patients, families, and professionals. This U.S. telephone number, 800-457-6676, is available from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Eastern Time. The line is staffed by Parkinson's information specialists who are trained to answer most Parkinson's-related questions, including those regarding the disease's treatments and therapies, research advances, and coping strategies. Callers with complex questions may be referred to a neurologist or another healthcare specialist in the diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson's disease. Staffers can also direct most callers to a local Parkinson's support group, and they maintain referral lists of experienced neurologists in most U.S. areas, as well as in many major cities abroad.

The Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF) publishes numerous educational materials, copies of which you can order for free. Just a few of these titles include:

  • PDF News & Review: a quarterly newsletter offering scientific updates and practical advice for living with Parkinson's disease.
  • Parkinson's Disease Q&A: a booklet answering frequently-asked questions about the disease's symptoms, treatments, and common problems.
  • Diagnosis Parkinson's Disease: You Are Not Alone: a video/print package designed for the person newly diagnosed with Parkinson's.
  • Creativity & Parkinson's 2009 Calendar: a charming and colorful calendar featuring artistic creations by people with Parkinson's disease -- a copy of which, by the way, is now in use at SFA headquarters!
  • For a complete PDF publication list and to request your free copies, click on www.pdf.org.


    Fall Prevention Technology

    HUR Health & Fitness Equipment offers a complete line of pneumatic-based physical conditioning equipment. At the HUR Aging in America exhibit, creative director Christine Anderson showed HUR equipment especially designed for fall prevention. The company's range of equipment is divided into three product groups: Main Line, Rehab Line, and Easy Access Line. However, the equipment from these different product groups can be readily interchanged. For more information, click on www.hurusa.com.

    Please be sure and join us for the next issue of Experience! which will connect you with additional service providers and resources of interest from the Aging in America conference.

    Experience! readers: Thank you for your interest and questions. Due to the high volume of contacts SFA receives, we cannot respond to individual queries or comments. However, the newsletter does address frequently asked questions and topics of vital interest to our members.

    Free SFA basic membership: If you aren't already a member of the American Senior Fitness Association (SFA), just sign up online at www.seniorfitness.org. There are no fees or membership dues. And, we don't give out our members' personal information to others! When you join SFA, you'll receive our e-newsletter "Experience!" which will bring you older adult fitness news, research, and wellness tips.

    Fitness and health professionals: You may distribute copies of Experience! to your exercise clients and patients as a free newsletter service. Copies of Experience! or excerpts therefrom must always ascribe credit to the American Senior Fitness Association (SFA). To fulfill that requirement, include the complete banner (title information at the top of each newsletter) as well as all post-newsletter notes, messages, copyright information, and the SFA logo.


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