Assisted Living Residents Staying Fit With Exercise Program

Aching pain in her right knee and shoulder was a constant companion of one assisted living resident.

So much so that it was diminishing the quality of life for the 86-year-old woman. "I could barely walk at times," she said.

When a fitness program for the elderly was suggested to her last year, she joined even though she knew that more pain initially was in the offering.

Last week, she showed that she had made a wise decision by joining the program, which is connected to Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. She was lifting light-weight dumbbells easily, kicking up her heels and bruising the air with uppercut and cross punches.

"This exercise has been a life-saver," she said before taking a recent early bird class with 10 other residents, one of whom is 95 years old. "The weights have helped build up my strength, and the companionship has been wonderful because it's not something I would have done by myself. This way, I get to suffer with everyone else," she said with a wry grin.

The goal of the program is testing the fitness of elderly residents annually for four years in a real-world setting. Currently, there is no cost to the fitness program. For more, read the story.

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Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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