Have you heard the saying, “Movement Is Medicine?” Countless studies have shown that physical activity can help reduce the risks of serious health conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, back and neck pain, some types of cancer, and even falls. That’s why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that adults aged 65 and older participate in 150 minutes of physical activity a week. This includes aerobic, strength, and balance activities.
If you’re already engaging in a vigorous walk each day, or playing golf or pickleball, good for you! But what else could you do to enhance your strength, balance, and cardiovascular health? Many health plans, including Medicare Advantage plans, offer exceptional fitness programs that provide low-cost or no-cost benefits to help you meet these physical activity recommendations and stay healthy. Here are three benefits that Medicare Advantage fitness programs may offer to help improve your fitness:
1. Low-cost or No-cost Gym Memberships. Many Medicare Advantage plans offer fitness programs that give members access to gyms, YMCAs, recreation centers, and boutique studios for no cost or a very low cost. These fitness centers offer a variety of workout opportunities, such as free weights, weight machines, workout classes, swimming pools, and other amenities to help members achieve their fitness goals. The Silver&Fit® Healthy Aging and Exercise Program is one example that provides access to 15,000+ standard and 5,000+ premium gyms, including national name-brand chains, YMCAs, and boutique fitness studios. Besides offering a variety of options for getting fit, a fitness center can provide a social outlet for members who want to connect to others in their community.
2. Access to On-demand Video Workout Classes. Going to the gym can be a daunting task if there’s no gym close by, if the weather is bad, or if you don’t have transportation. Fortunately, some Medicare Advantage fitness programs include access to on-demand workout videos you can do right from home! It’s easy to start, maintain, or increase your workout regimen when you have a library of cardio, strength, dance, yoga, Pilates, meditation, and cycling classes to choose from. It’s not unusual for such programs, like the Silver&Fit® Healthy Aging and Exercise Program, to offer thousands of video class options and even offer free online classes via social media.
3. Health and Fitness Coaching. Setting and maintaining your health goals is one way to avoid becoming a couch potato. Stay engaged in your well-being journey by connecting with a personal health coach through a Medicare Advantage fitness program. Whether you’d like to increase your activity level, reduce stress, improve your eating habits, enhance your sleep quality, or just feel better every day, a health coach can give you the boost you need via phone, video, or chat sessions. For those who are looking for extra assistance with their fitness, programs including the Silver&Fit® Healthy Aging and Exercise Program offer a “Get Started” exercise plan, designed to help you begin a goal-based fitness routine.
A recent 2022 poll showed that nearly half of all eligible Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans. It’s no wonder when you consider the many well-being benefits offered to members. The fitness programs and resources described above can help you create a personalized fitness routine so you can reduce your health risks and continue to live your best life.
Always remember to consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine and to discuss what types of exercises are safest for you.
Information from NAPS