Enhance Fitness is a low-cost, evidence-based group falls prevention and physical activity program developed specifically for older adults. Classes meet three times a week, an hour each session, providing social stimulation as well as physical benefits.
Below you will find more details about the program. Click the button to find a workshop near you.
What topics are covered ?
- Warm-Up (5-8 minutes)
- Cardiovascular/Aerobic Workout (20 minutes)
- Cool-Down (3-5 minutes)
- Upper And Lower Body Strength Training With Weights (20 minutes)
- Flexibility/ Stretching (8-10 minutes)
- Balance Training And Posture Review
Who can attend?
The target population of Enhance Fitness is older adults, from the frail to the fit. The goal of Enhance Fitness is to improve the overall functional fitness and well-being of older adults. Each class may include up to 25 participants. Enhance Fitness is taught by a certified fitness instructor to ensure quality assurance and safety. Group participation and social interaction are often cited by participants as important dimensions of Enhance Fitness. Many participants have been attending classes for years, building a feeling of group cohesion among members. For example, participants may call another participant who stops coming to encourage them to return.
What can I expect from the class ?
Clinical researchers have proven unequivocally that physical activity reduces the risks of dying prematurely from heart disease, and of developing diabetes and colon cancer. It can help reduce high blood pressure for those who already have it, relieve feelings of depression and anxiety, help control weight, help build and maintain healthy bones, muscles and joints, and help older adults become stronger, more balanced, supple and more able to move without falling (Keenan & Hawkins, 2004). Regular exercise in older adults improves energy metabolism, and vigorous resistance training substantially increases strength. Long-term controlled trials of exercise suggest that it reduces the loss of bone strength (Buchner & Wagner, 1992).
Desired outcomes of this program include:
- Increase strength and endurance
- Maintain or improve physical function
- Boost activity levels
- Elevate mood
- Decrease depression
- Reduce falls risk
- Lower healthcare costs
Details of the class
Enhance Fitness is multi-component and combines several key fitness areas: cardiovascular exercise, dynamic/static balance work, strength training and stretching. Enhance Fitness can be tailored for specific chronic diseases (e.g., arthritis).
The class can be taken seated or standing, and instructors are trained in how to modify the exercises to suit the varying abilities of participants. Enhance Fitness classes do not require any special or expensive equipment. Participants progress can be followed with fitness checks completed at the time the individual joins Enhance Fitness, again at four months, and then as often as needed.