May is Older Americans Month and the James Family Prescott YMCA is emphasizing the importance of being active and involved, no matter where or when you are in life. Quad Cities residents are encouraged to develop behaviors that are crucial to healthy aging, including healthy eating, increasing physical activity and social interaction—especially those adults over 50.
Adults 50 years and older currently make up more than 30 percent of the U.S. population, and will soon represent 45 percent of all Americans. Here in Yavapai County adults 50 and older make up 55 percent of the population. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that adults 50 and older have a 70 percent chance of developing at least one chronic disease. While these numbers seem daunting, the good news is that making small lifestyle changes that include increasing physical activity, eating healthier and staying active socially can help older adults live better.
“Due to COVID-19’s potential effect on our older members, we know that many have been staying home for their health. As the community reopens, we know that health is top of mind as people return to their regular routines,” said Mary Byrne, Health & Wellness Director, Prescott YMCA. “If you need help, support or just a place to get started, community-based organizations like the Y provide the needed guidance to help older adults age well.”
The Y offers many ways for older adults to live healthier including many older adult swim programs that help increase physical activity and improve health. These programs provide opportunities for individuals to begin or continue an exercise routine in an environment that provides resistance, as well as buoyancy, which helps reduces stress on joints when compared to other physical activities like running.
While the CDC recommends that older adults get a minimum 30 minutes of moderate exercise and/or strength training per day, less than one out of three of American’s 65 and older meet these guidelines. In an effort to get more adults involved and meet these recommendations, in addition to aqua exercise, the YMCA also offers Silver Sneaker classes that include weight training, cardiovascular training, stretching, balance and mental well-being. These classes are specifically designed with the older adult in mind to improve these areas safely.
“In response to COVID-19, the YMCA also has many virtual fitness classes to choose from to ensure all participants feel comfortable and safe,” said Mary. These classes can be found on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5ddHFbKuJJXuxS6KDblg2g
For nearly 60 years, Older Americans Month (OAM) has been observed to recognize older Americans and their contributions to our communities. Led by the Administration for Community Living’s Administration on Aging, every May offers opportunity to hear from, support, and celebrate our nation’s elders
For more information about our older adult exercise classes, feel free to contact Mary Byrne at firstname.lastname@example.org or 928-445-7221 x219 or visit prescottymca.org.
About James Family Prescott YMCA
The James Family Prescott YMCA is a community within a community serving our diverse population in the quad-city area. As a leading nonprofit organization, the YMCA exists to strengthen the foundation of the community. The YMCA serves local communities in Prescott, Prescott Valley, Chino Valley and Dewey/Humboldt since 1974; offering over 60 health, wellness and community programs within the four-building facility.
The YMCA is dedicated to providing affordable programs and services to benefit people of all incomes and backgrounds. Thanks to the generous support of those who donate to the Y’s Annual Campaign and other fundraising events, financial assistance is available to those who cannot afford the full fee and qualify for assistance.
The YMCA aims to provide each member with every opportunity to reach farther and improve their lives and the lives of those around them. Through Youth Development, Healthy Living and Social Responsibility, the YMCA’s goal is to inspire positive and lasting social change. For more information visit prescottymca.org
About the Y
The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,700 Ys engage 21 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. ymca.net