Commitment to Wellness Through Physical Fitness
“Engage at Every Age”
Our mission at Three Pillars is to meet the social, physical, and spiritual needs of older adults through high quality housing and services. But, it’s not enough to just say the words. As a community, that mission must have legs. It must be demonstrated daily in ways that impact the lives of everyone who lives here. Since physical fitness and holistic wellness are foundational to living a long, full, vibrant life, our goal is to provide the best possible options in programming, training, and equipment for our residents and adult community members.
This month being Older Americans Month, we want to celebrate the national theme of “Engage at Every Age,” highlighting ways our residents and staff are taking control of their physical fitness through regular training at the Wellness Connection.
The Backbone of our Commitment to Wellness
In 2010, Three Pillars opened the doors of the Wellness Connection, a 4,700-square foot wellness center focused on a holistic approach to wellness. Open to the entire Three Pillars community, including staff, as well as mature adult community members, the facility houses a fitness studio, aerobics gym, massage suite, cardio machines, and a full circuit of state-of-the-art HUR strength training equipment that’s specifically engineered for older adults.
With age comes a natural loss of muscle mass, strength, speed, reflexes, and coordination. These losses can prevent us from doing the things we want to do and even lead to chronic pain, illness or injury. The good news is that research shows that regular resistance training increases bone density, keeps joints supple, and counteracts age-related muscle loss. Knowing this, we knew that HUR equipment would be an essential part of fulfilling our commitment to helping the members of our community remain healthy and independent for as long as possible.
The pieces of HUR equipment installed in the Wellness Connection were selected to offer a complete whole-body strength training circuit. The Abdomen/Back Extension targets the back and abdominal muscles for targeted core strengthening. The Adduction/Abduction, Calf Press, Leg Extension/Curl, and Leg Press build strength through the hips and legs. The Dip/Shrug, Lat Pull, Biceps/Triceps, and Optimal Rhomb build strength through the neck chest, back, and arms.
Most recently, we added the HUR SmartBalance. As we age, the risk of falling rises, as does the potential for debilitating injury resulting from a fall. This is of great concern to us, and fall prevention is one of our highest priorities. The HUR SmartBalance provides an accurate, comprehensive assessment of each person’s risk of falling, including the identification of weak areas in need of immediate attention. This data is used by trainers and therapists at Three Pillars to create a personalized balance training program of fun, interactive games that build core strength and muscle memory.
Using Technology to Maximize Wellness
HUR Smart technology connects to each piece of HUR equipment in the Wellness Connection. Residents and members who are new to the equipment go through a 2-part training series. The training orients them to the machines and allows us to get to know them so that we can create their personalized training program. Their program is then entered in to the Smart technology system, and through the use of Smart Cards, subsequently displays on HUR touch screens to guide each person as they engage in their personalized training program. Reps are counted and users are alerted when it’s time to move on to the next exercise.
HUR Smart technology not only makes it easy for users to train independently while following a personal training program, it displays progress and automatically adjusts resistance to keep workouts challenging and effective.
For the Three Pillars staff, HUR Smart technology allows us to view important data about our residents’ workouts so that we can offer the highest level of support. We can see when the Wellness Connection is generally the busiest, and staff it accordingly. We can also see data that alerts us to potential problems and helps us design the most effective training program we can for each and every user.
Every week, we’re awed by the dedication our members have for their own health and well-being. There are more stories than we can share, but here are a few that showcase their commitment to living their best life:
- Sue is a Three Pillars resident and one of the Wellness Connection volunteers. She knows from personal experience and from her work with other residents that life sometimes throws you curveballs. Straining a muscle, spraining an ankle, suffering an injury, or getting sick are all things that can set a person back from their physical fitness goals.
But, Sue also knows that it’s useful to view health as an ever-changing continuum. At the Wellness Connection, residents are supported where they are and training plans are adjusted for life’s ups and downs. Most importantly, when residents show up at the Wellness Connection, they receive support and encouragement from a community of people that care. Sue feels that everyone is there for a positive purpose, leaving her feeling great after every visit.
- We also have a couple who comes in to the Wellness Connection to work out together. When they first made the commitment to physical fitness, neither one of them had a history of cardio or strength training. But, once they made the commitment, Milt and Rosalyn have amazed us all with 854 visits and over 14,000 exercises completed in the past two years.
You only have one body, what will you do today to care for it?
At Three Pillars, we want to do all we can to encourage those in our community, our residents – and our staff – to pay attention to their health and well-being wherever they’re at right now.
“When residents make the commitment to come in to the Wellness Connection and work out on a regular basis, the results are often astounding. Often, they can do things they haven’t been able to do in years. Their annual wellness exams reveal significantly better health. Even their walk changes, and they carry themselves with greater strength and confidence. This is what I want for everyone in our community, but the motivation for making the commitment is different for everyone. When someone is new to training with us, I know that my most important role is to help them discover their why. Maybe it’s wanting to continue to pick up their grandchildren. Maybe it’s not wanting to have to give up a favorite activity. Maybe it’s knowing that if they don’t do something soon, they are going to lose some measure of their independence. Whatever the reason, once they’re connected to their why, there’s no stopping what they can do.”
– Dawn Mans, Wellness Connection Coordinator
Whether you’re near or far from Three Pillars in Dousman, make today the day you take one step to enhance your well-being. Engage, no matter your age. If you’re in our neighborhood, pick up the phone or stop in to try your first Wellness Connection fitness class for free, take a tour, or become a member to experience the HUR Fitness equipment for yourself. We welcome you!
262.965.7017 | firstname.lastname@example.org | 400 N. Main Street, Dousman, WI 53118