It's the time of year when millions of people resolve to get off the couch and into the gym. However, many fitness facilities are not prepared or equipped to serve older members.
Vancouver, BC (PRWEB) December 27, 2011
It's the time of year when millions of people resolve to get off the couch and into the gym. However, many fitness facilities are not prepared or equipped to serve older members. The International Council on Active Aging (ICAA), the professional association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry, provides a checklist to help older adults rate and compare their local fitness facilities and choose one that meets their needs. Facility owners and managers can use the ICAA test to evaluate their facilities and take steps to become more age-friendly.
A sample of the ICAA checklist questions appears below. To download the complete checklist, visit the ICAA website at http://www.icaa.cc/checklist.htm
How to select an age-friendly fitness facility by the International Council on Active Aging
1. Is the facility's atmosphere one you feel comfortable in?
2. Are the locker rooms clean, accessible and monitored by staff?
3. Are the membership contracts and marketing materials available in large print?
4. Are signs visible and easy to understand?
5. Is the music acceptable and set at a reasonable level?
6. Does the facility's cardiovascular equipment have the following age-friendly features? A display panel that is easy to read, easy to change and easy to understand
7. Do the facility's treadmills start slowly, 0.5 mph?
8. Do the recumbent bikes or steppers have a wide and comfortable seat with armrest?
9. Does the facility's strength building equipment have instructional placards that have simple diagrams, easy to read text and font, and correct usage information?
10. Does the facility's strength building equipment have a low starting resistance, less than five pounds?
11. Does the facility offer programs designed to meet the needs of those with a variety of chronic conditions? i.e. osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, balance abnormalities, muscular weakness
12. Do the classes have different levels of intensity, duration and size?
13. Is there an extensive screening and assessment process? i.e. balance, functional abilities, osteoporosis
14. Does the facility offer an orientation class or session to help you become familiar with your surroundings?
15. Is the staff knowledge about the impact that medication can have on exercise
About the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA)
ICAA, the professional association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry, supports professionals who develop wellness facilities, programs and services for adults over 50. The association is focused on active aging-an approach to aging that helps older adults live as fully as possible within all dimensions of wellness-and provides its members with education, information, resources and tools. As an active-aging educator and advocate, ICAA has advised numerous organizations and governmental bodies, including the US Administration on Aging, the National Institute on Aging (one of the US National Institutes of Health), the US Department of Health and Human Services, Canada's Special Senate Committee on Aging, and the British Columbia ministries of Health, and Healthy Living and Sport. On October 1, 2011-the International Day of Older Persons-ICAA celebrated its 10th Anniversary and a decade of Changing the Way We Age®.