There was a “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” at the Brooklyn Sports Club (BSC) last week when seniors ages 50 and up took a free Zumba Gold class. They shook their hips, clapped their hands and stomped their feet to various Latin beats with instructor Debbie Ann Schneider.
The class was one of many being held in celebration of National Senior Health and Fitness Day, an annual event, which is observed across the country on the last Wednesday of May (organized by the Mature Market Resource Center, a national information clearinghouse for older adults).
“The more seniors move, the more mobile in general they will stay throughout their senior years,” said Alicia Rosenberg, the BSC Group Fitness Coordinator who thought the turnout was great. “We try to do fun things to keep the seniors active, and group fitness seems to be the key. They are very social and schedule oriented people, so if they know where they will be at a certain time, and it is fun and an engaging activity, they will come and stick to it.”
The goal for this nationwide event is to keep older Americans healthy and fit by teaching them the importance of staying active and connecting them with various quality of life resources that are available in the Spring Creek Towers community, such as Spring Creek Senior Partners, who dispersed information on nutrition and blood pressure facts. In addition, BSC Aquatics Director, Sheldon Sucre gave a lecture on identity theft and the importance of keeping track of your credit score and bank accounts.
This event had seniors in exercise gear and boy did they sweat. The entire day was filled with free classes geared towards older adults. Some of the classes the seniors were able to choose from were Burn and Firm, Zumba Gold, cycling, chair yoga and aqua aerobics.
This year’s theme was “Keep moving… you will keep improving” an idea based on medical research that has found that regular exercise among older adults helps to improve strength, balance and mental well-being. According to the New York City Department of Aging, by keeping a healthy exercise regimen, seniors reduces the risk of falling and heart disease, and it can help lower blood sugar levels.
Photos: Amanda Moses and Alicia Rosenberg