A free exercise program designed for seniors is available at Terrace Peaks Gymnastics Club

Seniors Can Move Program

A free exercise program for seniors is now in session at the Terrace Peaks Gymnastics Club in Thornhill. The "Seniors Can Move" program is designed to improve the agility, balance, coordination, and strength of adults, 65 or older. Gymnastics Coach Jazmin Wojnarowski says classes include stretching routines, as well as exercises designed to develop participants' spatial awareness and improve their ability to perform daily activities.

"We start off with a warm-up, so there we want to get our functional mobility started. After that, we go through, and we do dynamic balancing activities. After that today, we did a strength exercising circuit, so we went through; we did some muscle building where we worked on functional activities such as the stairs, which translates to walking upstairs in a home, walking upstairs to the bank, walking up the step into the bus. We are practicing balancing with different footing; we are practicing balancing while reaching, which translates to reaching up to a cupboard. A whole bunch of things, that when taken into the home, are really functional, to give these seniors back their confidence, to give them back their independence and to hopefully make them feel comfortable in whatever environment they choose to be in."

The Delta Gymnastics Society developed the program in 2018 through a pilot project involving 60 South Delta seniors, a geriatric nurse, and physiotherapists. In 2019, DGS expanded the program to gymnastics facilities across the province with the help of a grant from the BC government.

"This year, they decided to put it out as a pilot to get more communities involved, so when we heard about this, we were immediately interested in this. We wanted to offer something to the seniors in Terrace when I heard that we were interested in providing it to the seniors in Terrace I got really excited because I've seen what it has done and the impacts it has made on the seniors in the community where Delta had first offered it."

Since this is a pilot program, classes are only available until March 14th, but there is a chance for the free program to continue.

"Moving forward, we are really hopeful to be able to continue to offer this and not only offer it but offer it as a free program as we are right now to make sure that it is as assessable as it can be for all seniors in the community. Moving forward, we will be looking for a sponsor to sponsor this program."

Registration is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Walkers and canes can be used during the classes, but safety is a top priority, so participants must follow directions.