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Sunday, May 1, 2016

SilverSneakers program keeps seniors active

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Working' it out: SilverSneakers participant Louise Rash focuses on her exercise at Bodyworks. Photo/Harris
Bodyworks fitness center, located in the Shaver Complex in Salem, is offering a new program to seniors enrolled in Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare or Humana Medicare.

This health and exercise program, called SilverSneakers, allows eligible seniors to participate in activities and classes for no charge, said Bodyworks owner Drenda Sutton.

"This program is a great opportunity for seniors who otherwise may not have the resources to get involved in fitness activities or have access to health club facilities," said said. "It's a great way for Arkansans to maintain an independent lifestyle."

"I've seen it work wonders already," Sutton said. "The program encourages seniors to get active and become involved with socialization."

Sutton, who is certified with the National Health Club Training Association, said the 12 members who are enrolled in the SilverSneakers program at Bodyworks are given the opportunity to work on all the equipment in her facility. Sutton is not yet able to direct the specified SilverSneakers classes; however, she will become certified some time in January, she said.

NEW PROGRAM: Drenda Sutton, owner of Bodyworks in Salem helps SilverSneaker participate Cora Cochran learn more about the many exercise options available. Photo/Harris
"The participants will have classes twice a week. They will be seated (in the SilverSneakers) classes," Sutton said. "They will work with exercise balls, light weights and (resistance) bands; it's focused on building strength."

Sutton said that as the program gains momentum, SilverSneakers will also sponsor birthday and Christmas parties for its participants.

"I had one (senior) woman tell me she used to go to the doctor twice a month just to have someone to talk to," Sutton said. "What this (program) does is one of the best things I've heard of; it helps them to feel better about themselves."

Sutton said anyone who is interested in the program can stop by Bodyworks to pick up an application and look around the facility.

For anyone else who is interested in living an active, healthy lifestyle, membership is $25 a month, Sutton said.

"If the cost is an issue, I will work with people," she said. "Like the (SilverSneakers) program, I really am concerned about helping people have a better life."

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