The Iola-Scandinavia Community Fitness & Aquatic Center is teaming up with Iola Living Assistance to make sure their residents remain healthy.
“Greg Loeser and Tanya Piotter from Iola Living Assistance have wanted a class that would offer their residents full body health improvement,” center director Tim Welch said. “I was then introduced to activities director Jan Roovers and Jan and I created a modified Strong Bones class.”
The program is tailored to improve mood, strength, bone density and flexibility, according to Welch.
“I felt that with the benefits that I was seeing in my regular Strong Bones classes with younger ladies that this would be an ideal program for those senior citizens that have far less range of motion and who are limited in ability,” he said.
Participants use light weights of one or two pounds and elastic bands. All of this is done in a sitting position.
“This program is improving our resident’s strength, their bone density and mostly they are having fun and working hard at the same time to keep strong,” Roovers said. “It will help them with building strong bone and strengthen muscle mass. In return, it will help them be more flexible, which helps prevent falls and fractures.”
Socializing is an important part of the class as well.
“It helps their mood and makes them so much more energetic which leads to a good night’s rest,” Roovers said.
The residents seem to enjoy the class.
“I like to exercise,” Helen Hoeth said. “He (Welch) is a very nice man for coming here and doing this with us.”
Marian Carlson agreed.
“I think it is pretty darn nice of him to come here,” she said. “I like to remain active.”
Carlson quickly rolled up her sleeve to show off her muscle.
“Look at that,” she said. “They tell me it’s a muscle. I think it looks more like an egg, but if they say it’s a muscle, I will believe them.”
“So far, the residents have embraced the class,” Welch said. “Everyone is willing to try their best and I make it enjoyable for them. Everyone works to their own ability and the residents focus on the strength training. We all work hard to get the most out of the time.”
Roovers said the exercise program has been a nice addition.
“It has so far been a great success and I thank Tim and the Aquatic Center for offering this,” she said.