Next week, the Council on Aging of Buncombe County, the Land of Sky Regional Council and CarePartners will join together to help area residents celebrate Active Aging week. (And you thought it was enough to age gracefully. Think again.)
“We’ve known for a long time about the benefits of exercise to cardiovascular health as we age, but more and more we’re aware of its benefits for cognitive health,” says Rebecca Chaplin, aging program specialist with the Land of Sky Regional Council. The take-home message? Regular exercise well into one’s Golden Years not only helps the ol’ blood keep pumping, it may also help ward off the creeping problems of memory loss, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
More than 50 regional organizations and businesses, from movement studios to senior centers to parks and recreation departments and outdoors clubs, are participating in Active Aging week, hosting free classes and clinics for seniors from Sept. 24 through Oct. 1. Want to learn yoga? Free. Chair-yoga? Free. Tai-chi? Ditto. Ballet? Pirouette away, old feller, it’s on us. Several counties in Western North Carolina are taking part.
“This is a great opportunity for seniors to experience a whole range of activities,” says Chaplin. “It’s a chance for them to try something new and decide if it’s something they’d like to pursue.” All told, nearly 100 activities will be held.
Active Aging week will begin on Sept. 24 with a kickoff event at First Baptist Church of Asheville (5 Oak St.), starting at 9 a.m. and going until noon. The event will include free screenings—driver’s evaluations, body-mass indices, a test to determine “real age” vs. “chronological age ”—along with demonstrations and sample services including acupuncture, reflexology and massage therapy.
For more information and a full schedule of events, contact Chaplin at 251-6622.