Special Populations with Physical and Functional Limitations
It is widely accepted to link aging with degeneration and loss of functional capacity. Traditional methodology and programming of exercise protocols follow this logic and result in little or no impact to improve longevity and quality of life.
Common beliefs maintain that functional decline with age to be normal and it is irreversible. It is a prevailing notion in the medical and fitness industries that the ability to move for aging adults will be progressively deteriorating and it is not possible to restore functional body movement.
However, human anatomy and kinesiology literature outlines clearly the concepts of efficient human movement how the human body is designed to move for stay healthy. If you take an effort to follow these principles it is possible to slow down a gradual physical and mental deterioration with age and the overall health can be improved.
Typically, existing exercise programs for seniors follow the footsteps of the mainstream fitness by using weight machines, targeting isolated muscles and producing no results. Most importantly, they don’t include exercises to perform everyday activities outside the gym how to properly sit, stand, bend, carry and walk.
Conventional training does not offer programs to develop and maintain an efficient walking gait. On one hand, walking is encouraged as an effective activity and the one that is easily sustained. On the other hand, walking without proper alignment and movement contributes to a further dysfunction of joints and muscles throughout the body. As a result, it leads to a loss of the ability to walk and a heavy reliance on the assisting devices such as canes and wheelchairs.
Conventional guidelines recommend weight-supported exercise (swimming or cycling) to reduce the risk of injuries and preserve safety. However, a sufficient attention is not paid that these activities should be combined with the exercises on land or the body will lose the ability to move properly against gravity.
General perception of doom and gloom leaves seniors with a feeling that they are a “forgotten” and “unwanted” population and it contributes further to psychological and emotional problems.
Lenny Levin founded Wellness and Beyond to develop results-oriented programs and improve outcomes related to senior populations. These programs are producing successful outcomes for seniors to restore functional movement and sustain independence including people in their 70’s and 80’s.
The experience from working with existing and former clients has demonstrated that a progress can be made with senior populations to regain and sustain a functional quality of life and to perform independently the daily tasks. The programs offered by Wellness and Beyond focus on using the body weight for resistance and make the body work as one integrated system, and help clients fully embrace the concept that their own bodies are the “machines”.
Ballroom dancing can improve the overall functional capacity and has proven to boost psychological and emotional problems associated with aging. Lenny Levin is a long-time ballroom dancer and learning to dance is available as an option to enhance the results from a program of functional movement restoration.
Below are the video interviews of special population clients: