Everyone knows that exercise is a critical part of keeping your body healthy. This is increasingly true as you get older as bones and muscles may start to weaken, joints begin to wear down, and it may become more difficult to go about daily activities. If you qualify for Medicare insurance, you may be wondering if a gym membership is covered.
Types of Gym Memberships
Without insurance, there are many different types of gyms and memberships available for you to join. There are the classic chains, such as 24-Hour Fitness, Anytime Fitness, Gold’s Gym, and Planet Fitness, among others. Each of these gyms offers monthly or annual membership options and can give you access to a wide range of equipment and amenities. However, direct membership to these gyms require that you pay out of pocket for the entire amount of the membership. There are some other fitness club options available that may be covered by certain Medicare plans.
SilverSneakers is one of the most popular fitness programs for older adults. This program offers you a free membership that can be used at more than 16,000 gyms and fitness clubs across the United States, all but guaranteeing that you will be able to find a location near you. This program is included with many Medicare plans, making it a great option if you qualify.
There are fitness classes available that are created specifically for SilverSneakers members that differ in difficulty and setting, each of which is led by an instructor to help motivate you and correct your form if needed. If in-person classes aren’t for you, SilverSneakers also offers on-demand online classes so that you can workout in the comfort of your own home while still following an instructor’s instructions.
In addition to standard classes, SilverSneakers also offers a FLEX program, which provides more unique opportunities to membership holders. Some of the FLEX activities can include walking workouts, line dancing, or a variety of outdoor activities.
The Silver&Fit program provided by American Specialty Health offers a wide range of benefits for its members. This program also allows individuals to visit a number of popular health clubs, and the large number of qualifying locations helps to ensure you can find a location near you. This program offers fitness class options that can be done either at the gym or at home depending on your preferences.
Silver&Fit also offers a resource library that contains home fitness workout routines, videos about lifestyle changes, articles about dietary advice, and much more. A monthly newsletter is also available for you to keep up on all the latest news from the program.
PHIT stands for personal health improvement training, and the SeniorPHIT program is offered in conjunction with Aetna’s fitness program. This senior health program allows users to obtain a customized wellness plan to increase physical endurance, including a personalized dietary plan, access to an online database, and an online coach that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Medicare Coverage for Fitness Clubs
While fitness plans are generally not covered by Original Medicare Part A and Part B, many people choose to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan. Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies that contract with Medicare to provide Part A and Part B benefits, but many plans include additional coverage at little to no extra cost. These additional benefits can include prescription drug coverage, vision and dental care, hearing exams, and fitness club memberships, giving you access to workout equipment and the facilities you need to stay or get in shape.
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