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Quality Activities Keep Assisted Living Residents Smiling
Elizabeth Bemis

By: Elizabeth Bemis on November 27th, 2012

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Quality Activities Keep Assisted Living Residents Smiling

assisted living communities  |  assisted living facility  |  assisted living  |  assisted living in ct  |  assisted living community  |  Health Tips for Senior Citizens  |  Aging & Caregiving

assisted living smilingAssisted living communities are popular with older adults because they allow them to retain their independence within their own apartment in a dedicated purpose-built community, while having easy access to wide-ranging services, such as meals, health care, transportation and social and recreational activities. United Methodist Homes, a leader in assisted and independent care communities is known for its commitment to providing the highest quality of accommodations and care throughout the assisted living network. Assisted living in CT offers residents a variety of choices in accommodation and a multiplicity of programs and services to ensure that they can enjoy their retirement years to the fullest.

A growing body of scientific research in the field of gerontology substantiates the correlation between an active lifestyle and healthy longevity. It has also been found that physical activity and brain stimulating exercise positively impact the cognitive abilities of both older adults free from neurological disorders and those with conditions such as depression, dementia, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Simply put, happy seniors, living fulfilling lives can expect to live better and longer. Quality assisted living communities offer a wealth of recreational, social, educational and physical activities to stimulate the minds and bodies of residents and keep them happy, healthy and engaged. These activities include:

Group Exercise Classes

Low-impact exercise regimens such as tai chi, yoga, resistance band training, and aerobic classes customized to older adults provide a safe environment in which to exercise effectively and regularly, as well as an opportunity to have fun with a group of like-minded neighbors. In addition to exercise classes, dance classes such as line dancing, belly dancing and ballroom dancing provide opportunities for fun and enjoyable physical activity and socialization. To motivate residents to include regular physical activity into their daily routines, some assisted living communities will also hold weight loss and fitness challenges, which track the progress and reward improvements that residents make over a set period of time.

Trips and Excursions

Trips to theaters and museums, lunches at favorite restaurants, picnics at the beach, shopping excursions, and more… all provide residents of assisted living communities with opportunities to participate in life outside of their own surroundings; explore new surroundings or take a trip down memory lane. These opportunities for stimulating activity and socialization are particularly appealing to those residents who are no longer able, or prefer not to drive themselves.

Beyond Bingo: Quality Enhances Activities, Not Quantity

Some assisted living communities have activities morning, noon and night.  That is great if what they are offering is what is interesting to the residents!  At UMH communities, we believe in the quality of our programs.  It is just as meaningful to have a group with only three people participating if those three are enjoying an enriching experience.  If you have a room full of people and most of them are disengaged or sleeping, it is probably not a meaningful experience.  We take the time to get to know our residents and find ways to incorporate their interests into our activities programs.  Whether it be coordinating a new drama club, discussion group on US history or teaching a new card game, it is important for us to offer programs that our residents enjoy. 

Feeding Body and Soul

There is nothing quite like good food and good company. In addition to regular meal service, many assisted living communities host regular events including barbecues, cook outs, picnics, celebratory luncheons, themed dinners and formal dinner dances. These occasions not only provide opportunities for residents to get together, but can also be an important way to celebrate tradition, culture, heritage and diversity, particularly if they are customized to local traditions and to the cultural diversity of residents.  Contact your local UMH assisted living community to learn about the quality programs and lifestyle the offer their residents.

Key Takeaways

* Scientific research has shown a correlation between an active lifestyle and healthy longevity

* Exercise, Trips, and Healthy food are quality activities that keep assisted living residents healthy and happy

About Elizabeth Bemis

In 1998, I drove past an assisted living community construction site, learned that it was part of United Methodist Homes and realized the next stop on my professional journey was to work for a mission driven organization. Soon after, I joined the team as Executive Director of our Middlewoods of Farmington community and later served as Regional Manager for the Middlewoods properties before accepting my current role as Vice President of Marketing, Promotions, and Assisted Living Operations. I enjoy spending time with my family, cooking, reading, walking, and love working alongside our staff, residents, and families to build strong communities that reflect the mission, vision, and values of United Methodist Homes.

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