CBI Health Centre Practising Kinesiologist Logan Garland will be leading a new series of seniors fitness classes this fall at their Port Alberni location. Teresa Bird/Alberni Valley News

Fitness for fun and function for Alberni seniors

CBI Health Centre boosts its offerings with a new weekly seniors fitness class

A new program to help local seniors improve mobility and flexibility, and gain confidence, all in a social setting is in the works at CBI Health Centre, Port Alberni.

Logan Garland, a Practising Kinesiologist and one of the newest staff members at CBI, is developing a fitness class for seniors, including people living with age-related ailments such as chronic pain, reduced mobility, arthritis, osteoporosis, joint pain or stiffness, COPD, early stage dementia and/or Parkinson’s disease.

The class will focus on teaching techniques that boost one’s range of motion, balance, strength and flexibility in order to improve one’s overall function.

“We’re trying to increase the health and wellness of our senior population in and around Port Alberni,” says Garland, a certified Osteo Fit and “third age” instructor. The town has a large seniors population, she adds, but there’s limited programs to actually learn fitness-related exercises that will improve their quality of life.

Fall session coming up

The classes are designed to have something to appeal to people at varying levels of fitness and mobility.

• The inaugural series of 12 fitness classes runs Thursdays from Oct. 4 to Dec. 20, from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m.

• Learn safe exercises and stretches that can also be done independently in your home

• The exercises will be tailored to all abilities, but light walking and standing must be tolerated

• Not sure if this class is for you? Come in and give it a try before signing up

Fear can be a very real thing

While some seniors have no doubt been anticipating a class like this, others might need a little more coaxing to check it out. Often when people are struggling with mobility, they tend not to venture out too often, fearing the potential for falling.

Among Garland’s roles is teaching functional movements such as lifting, squatting, stepping onto curbs, using walking devices such as canes and walkers. She will incorporate fall prevention strategies and discuss home hazards that increase the risk of having a fall. Increasing one’s confidence is also a large component of seniors health and this can be increased through training such as teaching individuals how to get up from the floor if as fall does occur.

***

While the staff are excited about the new program and helping area seniors live a more functional and active lifestyle, CBI Health Centre offers a range of physical therapy services, including those designed to support people in getting back to work or manage pain issues. To sign up for the seniors fitness class, or find more information on other programs, visit them online here or call 250-723-9675.

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