News

Why does my back hurt? September 24, 2019 12:19

Did you know that not all back pain is the same? There are 2 types of back pain—mechanical and inflammatory. They may cause similar symptoms, but they’re very different.

 

Exercise for Lower Back Pain


Why We Gain Weight as We Get Older...It's Not Diet September 19, 2019 15:03

A major reason for middle aged weight gain is the natural muscle loss we all experience (sarcopenia)," says Dr. Caroline Apovian.

 

Strength Training for Seniors Video


A Weighty Response to Diabetes September 18, 2019 15:29

Even a 5 to 7 percent weight loss lessens the risk of developing diabetes if you have pre-diabetes. Exercise, though, is critical. If you try to lose weight simply through dieting, then you’re losing not just fat but also muscle, which is unhealthy.

 

Chair Exercise For Diabetes


Many Thanks to the Sisters of St. Dominic September 12, 2019 16:04

The Sisters of St. Dominic in Blauvelt, NY adopted the Stronger Seniors Chair Exercise program for their outreach.

 

Chair Exercise for Seniors DVD


Best Wishes to Silverado Memory Care of Naperville (Brookdale) September 12, 2019 14:34

 Silverado Memory Care of Naperville, part of Brookdale Senior Living, has adopted the Stronger Seniors Exercise Program.  We wish them all the best!

 

https://www.silverado.com/silverado-locations/illinois/st-charles/st-charles/


How to Prevent Falls - the leading cause of injury death in older Americans September 11, 2019 09:32

"Weakness in an older person's lower extremities is associated with increased risk for falls," he said. "Exercise and increased physical activities are important in improving and maintaining your leg strength," says JC Garilao, a physical therapist who works with senior patients.

Balance Exercise DVD Video


Building a Better Life - Focus on the Process, Not Results September 4, 2019 11:43

 The most content people aren’t focused on being the best; they’re focused on constant self-improvement.

When you stop stressing about external outcomes — like whether you win or lose, attain a certain promotion, or achieve some other form of validation — a huge burden is lifted off your shoulders and you can focus your energy on the things you can control.

As a result, you almost always end up felling better. Research shows that concentrating on the process is best for both performance and mental health.


Living a Better Life - Build Your Tribe September 3, 2019 14:42

Senior Tribe

 There’s an old saying that you’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with. Turns out that’s true. 

A large and growing body of behavioral science research shows that motivation (or lack thereof) is contagious. One study, “Is Poor Fitness Contagious?

Evidence from Randomly Assigned Friends,” found that up to 70 percent of your fitness level may be explained by the people you train with. Other research shows that if you work on mental tasks with people who are internally driven and love what they do, you’re more likely to end up the same way.

If, on the other hand, you surround yourself with people who have a negative attitude and are focused solely on winning the rat race, you set yourself up for a less fulfilling experience.


Hats Off to Brookdale Senior Living in Twin Falls, ID August 15, 2019 09:20

Grateful to announce that the Stronger Seniors Chair Yoga program has been adopted by Brookdale in Twin Falls, Idaho. Thank you!

Chair Yoga DVD


Thank you Aster Assisted Living of Clintonville, WI for choosing Stronger Seniors July 30, 2019 08:56

Conveniently located on Main Street within walking distance of shops, Aster of Clintonville, WI offers a welcoming community, with warm, friendly residents and a team of caregivers whose support and commitment are second to none.

 

Activities for Seniors


National Senior Games Pole Vaulter Breaks the Mold July 18, 2019 16:55

National Senior Games Pole Vaulter Breaks the Mold

“The reason you can’t do stuff? Do you know why? Because you don’t do it,” Johnston said. “The secret is to keep doing it. Keep on doing it.”

 

Senior Fitness DVD


Wonderful News from a Stronger Senior in NC July 17, 2019 10:20

A Wonderful News from a Stronger Senior in NC

Anne, I am SO proud of my gang. In the last 2 weeks, two of them were taken off one blood pressure med- one has lost 16 pounds, one has lost 9...

Senior Exercise DVD


Senior Caregivers on Six Things That Cause Falls July 12, 2019 16:59

Senior Caregivers on Six Things That Cause Falls

There are six factors that contribute to the fact that seniors fall so much more frequently than younger people. Here are some ways to help prevent these falls.

Balance Exercises for Seniors


How Seniors Can Improve Mental Health June 18, 2019 11:26

Socially isolated seniors have a 59% greater risk of mental and physical decline than those who do not experience social isolation, according to Forbes.

 

Improving Seniors Mental Health


Exercise for Seniors is Essential June 17, 2019 11:21

Exercise has countless benefits for those of all ages, including a healthier heart, stronger bones and improved flexibility. For seniors, there are additional benefits, like the fact that regular exercise reduces the risk of chronic diseases, lowers the chance of injury and can even improve one’s mood.

 

Chair Exercise DVD


Home Exercise Programs Lowers Fall Risk by 36 Percent in the Elderly June 7, 2019 09:40

falls in seniors are the third-leading cause of chronic disability, Liu-Ambrose and her team are now looking at whether the exercise program can result in reduced medical costs in this high-risk population. This study shows the importance of a home exercise program and how all adults can benefit from increased muscle strength and balance.

Fall Prevention for Seniors


Chair Exercise is Fun! March 28, 2019 10:12

"A friend and I started a "senior exercise" class at church. We watched many videos before choosing this one to use. It is great!!                                               - Jan D.

 

Chair Exercise DVD Videos 


Kind Words from Facebook Fan Barbara S. February 27, 2019 09:46

Kind Words from Facebook Fan Barbara S.

I've been using the Stronger Seniors videos since 2013 in peer-led exercise classes at our town hall in Richford, NY. They have been very popular with our exercisers, who range in age from mid-50s to mid-80s. I appreciate Anne Pringle Burnell's coaching style and respectful attitude, especially after reviewing another DVD where the instructor was condescending to the elderly demonstrator (i.e. "Isn't she cute!"). - Barbara S.

 

Chair Exercise for Seniors


Growing old is such an inevitable part of life it should be embraced with a light heart and years worth of wisdom and planning. January 1, 2019 15:46

Quite understandably, few look forward to the twilight of their life and all that it brings in its wake — deteriorating health, loss of vigour, restricted mobility, increasing dependence on others, not to mention a sense of foreboding and anxiety. Yet, ageing is an inevitable part of life that one has to learn to cope with willy-nilly.

At 74, I’ve found that old age need not necessarily be a period of physical and mental decline — though some ‘erosion’ is unavoidable — if one prepares oneself for it adequately in advance. First and foremost it’s imperative to prepare to accept old age all brace for all the restrictions or limitations it imposes on one’s mobility or ability to do things that one did when younger.

Equally important is the need to adopt a positive attitude towards life. Darkly regarding old age as the evening of one’s life must be avoided at all costs if one is to weather and overcome the difficulties and irritants that life is bound to throw up. An optimistic frame of mind or a light-hearted approach does help. Indeed, nothing prevents one from looking at the sunny side of life even in one’s sunset years. American statesman Bernard Baruch, who lived to a ripe old age, once remarked, “To me, old age is always fifteen years older than I am!” And, when asked his age, British satirist Jonathan Swift once quipped evasively, “I’m as old as my tongue and a little older than my teeth!” Is there a cleverer way to parry questions about one’s age?

Also vital is the need for the elderly to stay physically and mentally active in order to keep geriatric health problems at bay, especially Parkinson’s disease. Regular physical exercise coupled with the pursuit of a hobby or pastime that keeps one mentally and usefully engaged, is the perfect antidote for the prolonged spells of ennui that plague the elderly. Keeping abreast of current affairs — political, economic and social — also does help to keep boredom away. And the spicier the social gossip or grapevine, the better.

My former British boss, based in Edinburgh and now a spry 84, still pursues his passion for fishing with a like-minded octogenarian friend whenever the weather permits. They jointly maintain a boat fitted with an outboard engine and like nothing better than to go off trout-fishing on their own. Further, he remains extremely keen to know what’s happening in Munnar’s tea plantations, over which he once ably presided as General Manager. More importantly, advancing years haven’t blunted his sense of humour which remains as robust as ever.

In fact, the role of humour and fun in dispelling gloom in old age cannot be overstressed. These indispensables are the spice of life guaranteed to bring cheer and bonhomie, besides keeping one’s mind off life’s grim realities. The elderly should let humour pep up their lives regularly by hobnobbing with those known to be witty and funny. And letting one’s hair down occasionally — the little that remains of it, at any rate — can certainly do no harm so long as one doesn’t overdo things or get carried away by American statesman Benjamin Franklin’s flippant remark that “There are more old drunkards around than old doctors!”

Old age, of course, gives one an opportunity to take stock of one’s life dispassionately and, at leisure, sift through and analyse one’s successes and failures, achievements and shortcomings notched up over the years.

Companionship, of course, is vital for the elderly. No human being is an island and isolating oneself from society, as the aged often tend to do, is not at all advisable. On the other hand, socialising — to howsoever limited an extent — can inject refreshing variety into the drab routine of a senior citizen’s life and give it a much-needed boost. There’s no substitute for staying connected with one’s contemporaries.

Old age, of course, gives one an opportunity to take stock of one’s life dispassionately and, at leisure, sift through and analyse one’s successes and failures, achievements and shortcomings notched up over the years. It’s also the time when the elderly inevitably reach ‘anecdotage’. They turn nostalgic and love to recall “those good old days” when they were young and life was radically different from what it is today. They try to pass on the benefit of their varied experiences to the younger generation though the latter seldom has the time, patience, or inclination to hear them out. In such circumstances penning down one’s experiences is a good way of keeping oneself usefully engaged in old age. One never knows — one’s memoirs may make the bestseller list some day!

True, physical debility will be a stumbling block for many, quite literally. Ageing and stiffening body joints will ‘creak’ in protest and make mobility difficult — something one should learn to take in one’s stride stoically. Some of the more spirited among the elderly resort to the pretence of acting and behaving as if they are not as old as they really are. This game of ‘make-believe’ is indeed known to help in making light of one’s physical infirmities.

Above all, peace of mind, which everyone seeks but few are fortunate to find, is absolutely necessary. It’s the vital and efficacious balm that brings equanimity to one’s life, helping to salve the inevitable discomforts, irritants and problems of ageing. And, of course, it does help to promote overall health besides physical and mental well-being.

The Biblical lifespan of three score and ten years is now a thing of the past. Thanks to dramatic advances in medical science and technology, we can now expect to live well beyond 90 years and perhaps even longer, given reasonably satisfactory health. And this, assuredly, isn’t wishful thinking. Indeed, it is said there are more nonagenarians and centenarians around today than ever before, negating American humourist Josh Billings’ caustic observation, “Three score years and ten are enough. If a man can’t suffer all the misery he wants in that time, he must be numb!”

Admittedly, many hope for longevity without the inherent disadvantages of growing old. However, trying to put off ageing is futile and unrealistic (no matter what such proponents may tell us to the contrary) for it’s an integral and essential part of life that can never be reversed. So we must resign ourselves to growing old (since it’s the only method known so far of living a long time!). And in the process let’s try to make life as fulfilling and meaningful as possible.


New Book....Love Your Age April 22, 2018 19:40

The Small-Step Solution to a Better, Longer, Happier Life, by Barbara Hannah Grufferman

Chair Exercise DVD Video


About Anne Pringle Burnell February 1, 2018 15:48 2 Comments

Anne Pringle Burnell created and developed the Stronger Seniors™ Chair Exercise DVD Video Programs for older adults and people with disabilities, injuries, or chronic conditions.  


Nutrition and Exercise for Seniors November 13, 2017 12:15

Eating healthy is a lifestyle choice shaped by many elements, including our stage of life, situations, preferences, availability of food, culture, traditions, and the personal decisions we make over time. All your food and beverage choices count. MyPlate offers ideas and tips to help you create a healthier eating style that meets your individual needs and improves your health. For a colorful visual of MyPlate and the 5 food groups, download What's MyPlate All About?.  There's also a link for Physical Activity.

Take a look at A Brief History of USDA Food Guides to learn more about previous food guidance symbols. 

If you want to improve your quality of life, this government site may just be for you!

Stronger Seniors Chair Exercise DVD Videos for Seniors


Do You Have an Exercise Buddy? August 28, 2017 08:37

Seniors program shows the benefits of socializing and exercise....

A seniors program that combines exercise and socializing for people in the early stages of dementia and their care partners is taking place weekly at the Maple Ridge Seniors Activity Centre.

Minds in Motion is currently being offered as part of the Alzheimer Society of B.C. First Link dementia support to create an opportunity for people with dementia and their care partners to connect with others, make new friends and have fun.

Stronger Seniors Chair Exercise

First started in Victoria in 2009, the program made its way to Maple Ridge a year and a half ago.  The reason it was started, explained Kate Turnbull, Minds in Motion coordinator with the Alzheimer Society of B.C., is that there was a gap in programming for people with dementia.

“There is lots of programming that is for the person with dementia and there is programming for care givers. But not a lot that brings both together. That was the big thing,” said Turnbull.

“It’s evolved over time to be more specifically for people in the early stages of dementia,” she said.

The program starts off with 45 minutes of light exercise followed by another 45 minutes of social time.

Lori Briggs, B.C. Parks and Recreation Association supervisor of fitness leaders, heads up the fitness portion.

Briggs has specialized in seniors fitness for the last 35 years and has worked with a variety of groups including people with Parkinson’s, or stroke recovery and Osteofit.

For Minds in Motion, the exercises that are not any different than a normal seniors fitness class, it is Briggs’ patience and knowledge of dementia that makes the class unique.

If a person with dementia is getting confused she may stop the exercise early, if she sees someone getting frustrated or not being able to understand a movement, she will switch to another exercise.

Briggs has been trained by the Alzheimer Society of B.C. to recognize symptoms of dementia. She knows how to introduce exercises and is more aware about what might fluster somebody or make them more agitated.

If Briggs sees somebody kind of daydreaming and in their own zone she will say their name and suggest they try the activity being performed. If somebody doesn’t change legs or arms when they are doing an exercise she will make a suggestion that they try the other leg and if they don’t she moves on. If an activity is frustrating for an individual she will change the exercise completely for the whole group.

“I never say right or left I just say let’s take our leg and whatever leg they pick up and start with is fine with me,” said Briggs in a soft, calm voice, adding that the most important thing is that the participants feel successful.

“We want them to feel less stressed and just feel like they are part of the group and accepted. That is really important,” she continued.

Another thing Briggs does to make the participants feel comfortable is she always lets them know that if they are having a good day they can do whatever they can and if they are having an off day that it’s okay to stop when ever they want.

“It makes them feel like I don’t have to do this if I don’t want to,” said Briggs.

Briggs works the muscles that strengthen the core of an individual.

“What I try to teach are exercises that are designed to improve quality of life as well as balance and agility. Which is preventing falls and those kind of things,” she explained.

She teaches both sitting standing exercises and uses resistance bands and different sized balls for agility games such as throwing them up in the air and catching them or passing a ball around a circle.

During social time participants play a variety of games like Jenga, where you remove blocks from a tower without it falling over, the card game UNO, trivia and sometimes even ping pong.

Sometimes the games are modified slightly if there are persons in the group that are finding the games too challenging.

“Again with social time it is really about making that person feel successful, making them feel like a part of the group,” said Turnbull.

”In UNO there are all sorts of cards that do different things other than just the numbers and the colours. If I have somebody who is really struggling I will take those cards out so the game is more simplified,” she said.

Turnbull will also play a reminiscent activity with the group where she will ask them if, for example, they remember a time without car seats.

”For people with dementia the memories that normally go first are the more short term memories whereas they tend to keep their long term memory stuff from when they were kids longer,” said Turnbull.

“So those reminiscent games they tend to enjoy them because they have those memories from when their kids were young or from when they were kids themselves,” she said.

One of the great things about this program is everyone has training in how to deal with people who have dementia.

Also, Turnbull added, the care partner is also connecting with people in the same situation as themselves.

”There is a feeling of support. Even though it is not a support group, they are getting a bit of support from having other people around them,” said Turnbull.

Even if a participant does not want to participate in the activities they are also welcome to enjoy the refreshments and chat with other people.

Briggs always stays until the very end of the class even though she could leave after the exercise portion.

”I find it’s important for me so that I have that connection with them as well because I think it’s part of knowing the person’s past. I just enjoy it,” she said.

Minds in Motion takes place from 10:30 a.m. to noon every Friday except for holidays at the Maple Ridge Seniors Activity Centre, 12150 224 Street.


Prevalence of Obesity and Diabetes in the US 1994-2004 June 30, 2017 15:54

The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention reported that in 2009-10, an estimated 68% of the U.S. Population was considered obese or overweight.

The high prevalence of obesity is a concern, because it increases the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease.