Residents Achieve Results “Off the Charts” for Balance, Strength, and Flexibility
People living at Pioneer Cottages Memory Care in Fergus Falls began participating in an innovative wellness training program earlier this year, and results so far are astounding.
Live2BHealthy is an evidence-based program developed in Minnesota and specialized for the needs of older adults. It brings a certified personal trainer to Pioneer Cottages on a regular basis to lead group wellness activities focusing on balance, strength, and flexibility.
Classes offered onsite at Pioneer Cottages are specially designed for memory care. About 20 residents have become regular participants.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, “Professionals working in dementia care have long observed that exercising at the mid-stages of Alzheimer’s disease helps patients maintain independent living skills, maintain muscle memory, reduce fall risk and promote balance and mobility. Exercise also helps reduce stress, anxiety, depression and insomnia – problems that often affect people in the mid-stages of Alzheimer’s.”
Data collected between June 2019 and October 2019 shows the impact from wellness training and participants at Pioneer Cottages have achieved dramatic progress.
“The numbers are off the charts for this comparison,” says Cory Czepa, founder and CEO of Live2BHealthy. As a group, participants averaged a 370.8 percent improvement with balance, an 88.9 percent increase in lower body strength, and a 57.3 percent increase in upper body strength. They have also seen notable improvement in flexibility.
“The improvements we’ve seen in balance, flexibility, and body strength with our residents at the Cottages has been very impressive,” says Ann Boutwell, Director of Pioneer Cottages Memory Care in Fergus Falls. “The exercise class has reduced anxiety, and we have seen very few falls in the participants.”
“Not only can we see the better physical abilities; we also see the social aspect of bringing our residents together from three separate cottages to be a part of an exercise class,” Boutwell says. “They laugh, smile, and engage with each other and the trainer. The impact from wellness training has been good for the mind, body, and soul of our residents.”
PioneerCare Foundation funded the Pioneer Cottages’ Live2BHealthy program for its first year, giving staff the chance to assess its value. Boutwell says the program will now be added to Pioneer Cottages’ operational budget going forward.
Pioneer Cottages in Fergus Falls and Breckenridge provides care and support for up to 70 individuals in a home-like living setting. To learn more about Pioneer Cottages, please contact Ann Boutwell, Housing Director.
PioneerCare Foundation supports the strategic goals for PioneerCare. To learn more about PioneerCare Foundation, please contact Steve Guttormson, Foundation Executive Director.