Fitness Has a New Focus During Medicare Open Enrollment Time
– Regular exercise is an important part of healthy aging. That’s why many Medicare plans offer affordable exercise programs among their benefits. Today, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, a flexible fitness option is more essential than ever in helping seniors stay fit, strong, and healthy.
To help seniors meet their exercise needs, the Silver&Fit® program from American Specialty Health Fitness, Inc. (ASH Fitness) is available through participating Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans open for enrollment to Medicare beneficiaries now.
“The closing of gyms for seniors who were used to an exercise routine can have a significant impact on health,” says Jaynie Bjornaraa, PhD, MPH, PT, and AVP of Digital Fitness Solutions with Silver&Fit. “Older adults who stop exercising can become deconditioned in as little as two weeks.”
The Silver&Fit program offers a variety of exercise and fitness options, including online or digital options, to accommodate all levels of fitness. Here are some of the choices.
• 1,700+ On-Demand Fitness Videos. The Silver&Fit video library lets members customize their at-home exercise routines with a collection of workouts available through the Silver&Fit website or mobile app.
• In-Person Gym Access. As gyms are permitted to open, and when members feel comfortable going back into the gyms again, the Silver&Fit network will be ready and waiting for them. The Silver&Fit program includes gym access and members can choose from a nation-wide network of more than 15,000 fitness centers, YMCAs, and fitness studios.
• Live Telephone Coaching. Members seeking help with fitness goals or lifestyle improvements can work with a live coach to obtain advice on fitness, nutrition, sleep, and other healthy living habits.
• Social Engagement for Emotional Support and Community Connections. Social isolation can impact mental and emotional health, contributing to poor overall health. The Silver&Fit program links members to more than 120,000 organizations ranging from chess and painting clubs, to classic car and nature organizations. This resource allows members to browse the clubs that suit them and reach out to join in on their Zoom or other virtual or socially distanced meetings to safely connect with like-minded contemporaries.
• At-Home Fitness Kits. For those who want to create or enhance their own workouts at home, Silver&Fit has developed home fitness kits. Kits may include an exercise DVD, a workout mat, hand towel, resistance band, dumbbells, or wearable fitness trackers.
The Silver&Fit program also offers free daily workouts for the public on Facebook Live or YouTube. Anyone can join these popular exercise classes tailored to the needs of older adults. The initial intermediate classes, such as cardio, yoga, strength, and others, were so successful that beginning October 12, 2020, Silver&Fit added beginner and advanced level classes, as well as classes hosted virtually featuring locations from around the world. All classes are taught by certified instructors with experience creating classes for older adults.
To participate in a free exercise class, follow Silver&Fit on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SilverandFit or on YouTube at www.youtube.com/silverandfit.
For information about whether your Medicare plan includes the Silver&Fit program, contact your health plan or 1-800-MEDICARE. Visit www.SilverandFit.com for more information about the program.