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SilverSneakers program aimed at women

February 25, 2009|By MARLO BARNHART

Since taking ownership of Curves at 10210 Governor Lane Blvd. in November, Iffy Imarhiagbe has been determined to offer healthy physical activities to women of all ages.

To that end, Imarhiagbe is actively seeking women 65 and older for SilverSneakers, a wellness reimbursement program exclusively for eligible Medicare members through Curves.

SilverSneakers offers an innovative blend of physical activity, healthy lifestyle and socially oriented programming that allows older adults to take greater control of their health.

"I've been getting some calls," Imarhiagbe said.

Anyone interested in the program may bring in her insurance card to enroll.

Imarhiagbe said she and her staff do all of the billing. Once a woman qualifies through her insurance, everything is free - including a Curves membership.

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SilverSneakers members have access to any participating fitness center in the United States while traveling.

They also may take part in customized SilverSneakers classes designed exclusively for older women who want to improve their strength, flexibility, balance and endurance, and in health education seminars and other events that promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.

Imarhiagbe, who is too young for SilverSneakers, points to the Curves program for her success in losing 173 pounds.

"You can stick to this for life," she said.

In addition to the circuit exercise program, Curves offers vitamins and other supplements to aid in decreasing weight and increasing fitness.

A SilverSneakers class was held in January and interest was high.

"Sixty-three people signed up ... some members and some nonmembers," Imarhiagbe said.

The award-winning SilverSneakers is a proven, results-oriented program that enables older adults, often burdened with chronic conditions, to take charge of their health and maintain an active, independent lifestyle, according to the fitness program's Web site.

The SilverSneakers program won the 2004 HAN Award from the Healthcare and Aging Network of the American Society on Aging.

Hours at Curves in Williamsport are Monday to Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon.

For more information about Curves in Williamsport and its SilverSneakers opportunities, call 301-223-6991.

To learn about other Curves in the area that might offer the SilverSneakers program, visit www.silversneakers.com.

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