How do You want to Live?
Look, Feel, Move, Work, Play and Age Better.
Gordon Palmer, Certified Personal Trainer, Functional Aging Specialist, Precision Nutrition Coach, Personal Training Team Leader at Global Fitness & Racquet Centre, Owner Operator of Project Body Smart, Kelowna BC Canada
Functional Aging, Ageless Exercise, Third Age Fitness, Older Adult Fitness. Whatever you want to call it at a certain age you begin to question how you’re exercising, or how to start exercising if that’s the case.
I began looking into this area of fitness a few years ago and have been taking more and more of an interest in it as I get into my mid 50s. My concern is that I see more and more older adults joining gyms, fitness studios and taking up sports but not having the experience or knowledge of the necessary conditioning required before increasing physical activity. At least in the ways I’m seeing them approach it today. They’re jumping into Cycle and High Impact Classes or Playing Tennis after 20+ years of office work and raising families. They’re joining a variety of facilities and studios with inexperienced trainers who, bless their hearts, have no idea what it’s like to move a body that doesn’t balance or bend quite like is used to. It also doesn’t recover quite so quickly after a rigorous workout. Young trainers may not understand this age group just don’t see the need to lift twice their body weight on the squat rack or build a booty to hold a champagne glass. They just want to be able to get out of bed tomorrow and play pickleball with their friends or take in a golf game.
I am however super excited to see more of these age groups getting out of the house, condo or seniors’ facilities and into the general population for exercise and networking activities. I believe that keeping in touch with all ages of society is important to supporting a healthy and active retirement. What older adults share can sometimes help the younger less experienced cope with life’s frequent challenges and remind them of the fact that we are all going to age. If we’re lucky. The skill set that younger people offer older adults can help them stay in touch with the fast pace of change in the world today. For me. Seeing my mother who’s in her 80s using an iPad for email, texting and sharing pictures gives me incredible joy. Thanks to my siblings who had the foresight to get it for her and teach her how to use it. Being in touch with friends and family plays an important role in the quality of, and how you value your life.One great place to make sure that social networking can happen is fitness facilities that have a wide range of age groups with appropriate options for all them. Mixing and mingling all ages in some activities and having specific programs for different age groups or fitness levels is the way to go in my opinion. Smaller group training can provide individualized programming for different levels of fitness but keep the social aspect of group fitness. Thus, providing a mix of ages and interaction between them. Functional Aging programs that allow people to approach fitness from wherever there at can give comfort to those wanting to learn how to move correctly, improve strength, balance and coordination before venturing into the gym, or more intense group sessions. Participants may also find these sessions perfect for what they want to accomplish and never venture into the gym at all.
Getting an assessment and then learning to move or move better should be your first step to starting any increase in your current activity levels. Without first assessing where you’re at with your health and fitness you can face increased risk of injury and setbacks that can stall or even deter you from moving forward with living better.
Admiring these older adults and the fact that they are taking an active step towards improving or maintaining their current fitness level has made me think. How did they get to where they’re at? What did the ones that are in good physical, mental and emotional condition do differently in their lives? What decisions were made, or situations endured during life, lead to poor fitness, diminished cognitive awareness and negative outlook. We can blame it all on genetics. Whether it’s your 20s or 50s or 70s……aging well should be a priority not just for physical appearance but for quality of life. The decisions you make now and how you respond to situations during your life make a difference in the quality of the life you live later. What you do for your body now and throughout life will positively affect how you feel and move as you age.
A major priority for those moving into their later years should be sustaining independent living for as long as possible. Having functional independence drastically improves health, happiness and lifestyle. You don’t need to obsess about the perfect body or kill yourself in the gym 6 days a week or log everything you eat daily. Just learn how to eat and move correctly to maintain a functional body for whatever path your life takes you on. Try a variety of physical activities that peak your interests. Know the risks vs benefits or ask a qualified Trainer or Coach if it’s right for you and how to prepare.
Even if you hate the gym. Meaning you’ve given a few fitness facilities an honest try and it just doesn’t suit you. Go to a professional for an assessment to find out where you’re at and where you should begin your fitness journey. If you’re already working at it then after being assessed, you may need to tweak your current path to adjust for anything that shows up in your results. You may even find out why you’re not getting results or keep getting injured or find a more efficient way to accomplish what you set out to do.
Whatever your age. Take the first step from where you’re at and have an experienced fitness professional assess your functional movement, current activity and fitness level and get you on a plan that will support where you want to go and how you want to live, work, play and age.
YouTube, Instagram and other social media are fun and convenient but there is nothing that can replace a face to face with someone educated and experienced who cares about your well being and helping you live better.
At Global Fitness and Racquet Centre we’ve built and continue to build a team of professionals who are dedicated to helping you. We are so much more than a gym.
Book a Free FitCoach Sessions or purchase Functional Movement Screening or see if you qualify for our 2 for $99.00 Personal Training offer.
“Christmas Personal Training Special” $45.00 per session. Some restrictions apply.
Questions? Comments? Please feel free to contact me at email@example.com