SilverSneakers fitness classes available on island

October 14, 2016
By Marcy Shortuse

■ BY SUE ERWINtricia-hamann-web

Friends of Boca Grande is pleased to offer SilverSneakers fitness classes at the Boca Grande Community Center starting Tuesday, Nov. 1 in the multipurpose room.

Tricia Hamann, a National Strength and Conditioning Association certified personal trainer, will instruct the classes. They’re designed to improve cardiovascular health, increase energy levels, increase endurance and build muscle strength.

Hamann has an extensive background in strength training, including working as a fitness coordinator for firefighters in New Hampshire since 2008. She moved here in June to accept a position teaching at the YMCA. She currently teaches high-intensity group training classes at the Englewood and Venice YMCA sites.

Hamann said smaller classes are nice, because they allow the trainer to work with individuals at their own pace.

“Everyone is invited to these classes. They are for all fitness levels. The goal is to get heart rates up and increase mobility,” she said. Hamann said that as people get older, they are likely to lose muscular strength, and these classes can help regain it.

“Sometimes it’s very difficult to get motivated to commit to a fitness program. I feel the best part about these classes is watching people get together and meet new friends and hold each other accountable to come to class,” Hamann said.

Two kinds of classes will be offered on Tuesday mornings. The flex cardio go classes will focus on stretching and increasing upper-body strength, abdominal conditioning, and relaxation designed to increase energy. The daily living cardio and strength classes are more relaxed and include music. Attendees are encouraged to have fun and move to the music through a variety of exercises.

Hamann said the 10 a.m. class is for everyone, but especially for people who are having a harder time doing a standard exercise class. Chairs will be available should someone require assistance for balancing.

“I always start my classes getting to know the students. I believe strongly that if I’m teaching something and you think it’s more than you can do, then we can modify it and bring it to whatever level you are comfortable with. And then maybe after a few weeks, when your strength has increased, you can try the exercise again.”

The SilverSneakers program allows the instructors to teach similar courses in different settings.

“It’s kind of nice, because it offers fitness opportunities for people who don’t have easy access to a gym or cannot get to one,” Hamann said.

She contacted Friends of Boca Grande Community Center Program Director Debbie Frank because she thought the classes would be a good fit for Boca Grande.

“I’m excited to be here and to offer these classes. I’m looking forward to seeing how things progress over the next few months,” Hamann said.

Each class is $10, payable to the instructor. If you are already a SilverSneakers member, you can join these classes for no charge. SilverSneakers is a fitness program provided at no cost by more than 70 health plans nationwide. Classes are designed for all abilities. To find out how to get registered, check with your Medicare benefit plan.

Preregister for classes online at friendsofbocagrande.org or call 964-0827.