Staying fit means even more as we age. It can mean the difference between healthy, independent living at home versus being susceptible to accidents like falls and needing additional elder care support. Good “home fitness” means maximizing your level of functioning and wellbeing based on your situation. You may not be training for a marathon, but the results for your quality of life could be equally amazing.
At Aging Wisely, our goal is to enable every individual we work with to live the most fulfilling life possible, with utmost dignity, focusing on their physical, mental, spiritual, family and financial wellbeing. This means when our geriatric care managers work with a client we are focused on helping them live a life that is most fulfilling to them, given their circumstances and options. We do this through a holistic and personalized approach. This is based on the understanding of how much different areas of wellbeing intersect. For example, greater fitness can bring reduced pain and decreased depression. The ability to stay engaged and continue favorite activities can improve your mental wellbeing and help you stay connected to your community.
When we do a geriatric care management home assessment, we assess everything from the physical environment to nutrition concerns, fitness and safety needs to medication management and your elder care support system. We make recommendations we know can make a difference for you. Our care managers know about a lot of special elder care resources in our local community, as well as how to best navigate the options available.
When it comes to in home fitness, we often spot issues for which you might benefit from some home health physical therapy. We can work with your doctor on getting that prescribed and covered by Medicare. There might be some easy adaptations to your home that could also increase your ease of getting around while decreasing safety hazards. Another favorite resource we often recommend is a great Pinellas County company called At Home Fitness.
At Home Fitness specializes in personal training for older adults throughout Pinellas County. The owner, Kelly Carson, spent many years working as a physical therapy assistant in home healthcare (in addition to other settings like nursing homes and sports medicine clinics). This gave her a unique insight in to the needs of older clients, as well as a passion for helping. What she noticed especially was that clients wanted and needed ongoing services (beyond the short term rehabilitation typically provided via Medicare) to provide a strong basis of fitness.
The At Home Fitness trainers create a custom plan for each client to enhance their fitness and compliment other eldercare services. This might include a strengthening program prior to surgery to enable you to get better results and tolerate rehabilitation better and/or assistance after rehabilitation to continue your good results. A fitness program can result in clients having better balance, improved strength and stamina, reduced pain and greater flexibility. All of these things can not only keep you safe, but make life a lot more pleasant.
Here are a couple quick examples of how their services have benefited Aging Wisely’s clients:
- Kelly has helped a disabled client of Aging Wisely’s who really benefits from regular exercise to maximize her mobility and maintain good balance. It has most certainly kept her from falling and given her a higher level of independence. The client also looks forward to the visits as part of her routine and social interaction.
- Another client had previously loved swimming. She’d had a series of very serious health issues and moved in to an assisted living facility. At Home Fitness created an aquatic routine with her and visits to assist her in the pool weekly. She has been so thrilled to enjoy her time in the pool, to say nothing of what it has done for her health.
- One client never “worked out” even though she led a very fit life, walking a lot and being very active. When she had physical therapy, she found it to be quite a chore. We asked her to meet Kelly to “give it a test run” and she was surprised how much she enjoyed her and the workout. Her doctor has been astonished at her health improvements, especially as she has been so reluctant to make changes in the past.
A personal trainer may not be the first resource you think of when you are caring for an aging loved one with health problems. These are the types of insights a professional care manager can offer to enhance the life of your loved one.
Contact us online or at 727-447-5845 for an eldercare consultation or geriatric care management assessment in the Tampa Bay area. We serve Pinellas, Pasco and Hillsborough counties…from St. Petersburg and Clearwater through New Port Richey and Tampa. If you want to locate a care manager outside of that area, you can visit www.caremanager.org to search for certified care managers.