Your physical health is important at any age, but it becomes especially so as you transition into your golden years with more health concerns, doctor’s visits and medications all piling up. All of these factors can affect how physically fit you are able to stay, which is why SilverSneakers was created. The YMCA of Greater Cincinnati offers SilverSneakers at all of our branches, so read on to learn more about the program and the benefits that it provides to all of our senior members!
What is SilverSneakers?
SilverSneakers is a fitness program that is completely free to Medicare beneficiaries. It focuses on getting seniors out of their homes and into the gym and community to improve their health and overall well-being. The program includes access to gyms, exercise classes and social activities. Some of the inclusions are:
- More than 16,000 gym locations, including the YMCA of Greater Cincinnati!
- All the equipment in the gym
- Amenities like pools and courts at the center
- More than 70 styles of specially designed SilverSneakers classes with certified instructors
- Online resources that with nutrition and fitness tips
- Social events in your community
The Y and the SilverSneakers program work together perfectly with the same goal of promoting an environment that focuses both on working out and creating a greater sense of community. According to a SilverSneakers member survey, 88% felt they have a “better quality of life” since joining, more than 90% said their health was “good, very good, or excellent” at the time of the survey, and 75% said they’ve made friends because of the program.
The SilverSneakers program offers a variety of exercise classes created by experts in older adult fitness that are designed for all ages, fitness levels and abilities, with modifications and chairs available in certain classes. Check out the Cincinnati YMCA Program Schedules to find out when our SilverSneakers classes are available!
- The Classic – This low-intensity class aims to help elderly people with the routine activities of daily living, like getting in and out of chairs and overall strength and range of movement. A chair for seated or standing support is available as a modification.
- Circuit – This class is medium intensity and low-impact and focuses on building upper body strength with weights and resistance bands. A chair is used for standing support, stretching and relaxation exercises.
- Yoga – This is a beginner-level yoga class using a chair to safely perform a variety of seated and standing poses to increase flexibility, balance, and range of movement. It’s a lower intensity class that will help reduce stress and promote mental clarity.
- Splash – Seniors of all skill levels can participate in this low-impact water aerobics class with cardio and light weightlifting exercises. No swimming abilities are required as this class occurs in shallow water and focuses on improving flexibility and agility with cardio, strength and endurance conditioning.
How to Enroll
SilverSneakers is available to those with either the Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medicare Supplement plan that offers an included SilverSneakers membership. The SilverSneakers website says the program is covered by one in four Medicare programs, and you can check if your Medicare Advantage or Medigap plan covers SilverSneakers on the program’s website. You can visit that same link if you’re in the market for a Medicare Advantage or Medigap plan that includes the SilverSneakers program in its coverage.
Once you established that you qualify, it’s time to enroll in the SilverSneakers program! Get your SilverSneakers membership card and bring it to your closest YMCA of Greater Cincinnati branch’s front desk and get full access to our gym, classes, and amenities. We can’t wait to see you here!