Even though it’s common knowledge that physical activity is important for good health, for many people, staying active in their senior years, especially after retirement, is not always an easy feat. If you find yourself in the same situation, joining a fitness organization like Silver Sneakers may be just what you need to get moving.
Even though Original Medicare coverage does not include fitness programs like Silver Sneakers for Medicare beneficiaries, many Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans do cover this wellness program. If being active is a priority for you, and Silver Sneakers sounds like a great option, make sure to find a Medicare Advantage plan that includes free coverage.
What is Silver Sneakers?
Silver Sneakers is the name of an organization that provides gym and fitness class memberships to people who are 65 and older and are eligible for Medicare coverage. Silver Sneakers programs are available in over 13,000 locations in the United States. They offer free fitness programs in gyms, pools, and even outdoors.
As a member of Silver Sneakers, you have access to a gym’s cardio equipment, pool, weights, and fitness classes lead by certified instructors. If you prefer being outside, there are programs that arrange member meetings at parks or recreation centers. Some of the outdoor activities include tai chi, yoga, or walking.
Silver Sneakers even offers on-demand videos of classes and work outs that you can do at home. You can download their fitness app to your smart phone or tablet and take your workouts with you wherever you go.
The Importance of Physical Activity As We Age
At any age, participating in regular physical activity is one of the most valuable things you can do for continued good health. Keeping physically active in your senior years is even more important because the advantages are huge. What are those advantages? Here’s a list of just a few:
• It helps you maintain an independent lifestyle.
• It reduces the risk of falls and fractures.
• It decreases the risk of certain types of cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
• It can help to lower levels of blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol.
• It improves stamina, strength, and balance.
• It reduces depression.
• It relieves pain and swelling caused by arthritis.
Those are the physical benefits of regular activity and exercise, but there are other advantages. Joining a fitness organization motivates you to stay socially involved, too. Through available programs like those that Silver Sneakers offers, you can meet new friends, have fun in groups, and avoid isolation and loneliness which are all too common for people who are past the age of retirement.
Fitness programs like Silver Sneakers are not for everyone, but with so many great advantages associated with regular physical activity, why wouldn’t you want to find a Medicare Advantage plan that includes this free fitness program?
For Medicare beneficiaries, looking for the right fit in a Medicare Advantage program is an important step in the retirement process. To find a program that is available in your area and meets your requirements, you can visit online sites that compare programs. Knowing what is available, and what they offer, will help you make a well-informed choice that fits your needs best.