Active Older Adults | Denver YMCA

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Active Older Adults

Fitness, Programs, and Activities for Seniors

The Denver YMCA caters to seniors with classes, activities, and events that nurture their spirit, mind, and body.

The Y’s active older adult programs provide opportunities, support, and guidance to safely maintain and improve health and wellness, so everyone can lead their fullest lives possible — at any age.  All programs are presented by trained YMCA staff and are developed to meet the needs of older adults.

In addition to exercise and fitness, the Denver YMCA gives seniors confidence, care and respect, and a sense of community the Y is known for.

The friends I’ve made here are the kind of friends you have for a lifetime. – Nancy Smith, Y member since 2003.

The Denver YMCA’s senior programs vary by location and include:

Health and wellness programs

Active Older Adult Fitness

The Y’s fitness classes can help older adults benefit from appropriate and regularly scheduled activity. Members get a well-balanced workout that includes warm-up, cardio, strength, and flexibility exercises.

Fall Prevention - The Susan M. Duncan Family YMCA and Southwest Family YMCA have “Moving for Better Balance,” which uses the principles of Tai Chi to teach balance skills and good body alignment through coordinated, flowing movements. This class helps seniors improve balance and mobility, increase confidence, and reduce the risk of falling.  

Arthritis Care - In these classes, seniors stretch, tone, and move in both gym and pool classes to maintain a full range of motion. Classes include a series of specifically designed activities that help improve joint flexibility and relieve pain and stiffness. Sponsored by the National Arthritis Foundation. (Doctor's permission required)

Hatha Yoga - This traditional approach to yoga uses a variety of mobility, stabilization, relaxation, and meditation techniques that are tried and true. 

Mat Pilates - In these classes, participants focus on total body alignment and intentional breathing. 

Zumba Gold® - This Latin and international music-based class is for active older adults and those who prefer a lower-impact workout.

Tai Chi This ancient low-impact martial art is practiced in a slow, focused manner with intentional breathing that puts minimal stress on muscles and joints.

Total Fitness - This is especially for active older adults and is designed to work the whole body using small weights, resistance tubing, stability balls, and body weight exercises. 

Parkinson’s Disease Care - The Schlessman Family YMCA, Susan M. Duncan Family YMCA and Downtown Family YMCA offer these classes to promote movement, core strength, balance, and endurance to reduce the effects of Parkinson’s Disease. Offered in both low intensity and high intensity, these classes encourage participants to push themselves while staying safe.

SilverSneakers® - The Schlessman Family YMCA, Downtown Family YMCA, Littleton Family YMCA and Southwest Family YMCA offer several classes through this national program that help older adults take greater control of their health. Classes vary by location but may include SilverSneakers® Classic and SilverSneakers® Yoga.

Aquatics - The following aquatics programs are ideal for active older adults and are offered regularly at the Susan M. Duncan Family YMCA:

  • Aqua Arthritis - Geared toward people with arthritis and joint injuries, this class focuses on joint flexibility, core strength and balance.
  • Deep Water -This non-impact class incorporates muscular strengthening and endurance exercises. Flotation belts are worn for the majority of the class.
  • Boot Camp H2O - This bootcamp-style class incorporates a variety of techniques and equipment using water resistance.
  • Hydro Power - This class uses the natural force of water to increase core control, muscular strength and cardiovascular levels.
  • MS Water - This class is designed specifically for individuals with Multiple Sclerosis or other special needs. Modifications are used to accommodate each participant’s abilities. NOTE: The pool is accessible via a chair lift.

Community and social activities

At the Y, seniors meet new friends who are at the same point in life and going through the same kinds of things.

Denver YMCA seniors enjoy:

  • Day trips to some of the best destinations in town.
  • Ongoing learning through presentations fromauthors, experts, and teachers on a variety of interesting topics. 
  • Activities includingregular movie nights, potlucks, and parties.
  • Clubs such as bridge clubs, game groups, and special-interest clubs. 

 To learn more, see the fitness and swim schedule for each YMCA Wellness Center.