The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Neighborhoods South County

June 29, 2014

Range-of-motion exercise classes offered at Jefferson Senior Center

JEFFERSON — Anneliese Easton has been teaching exercise classes for 35 years and has recently brought her expertise to the Jefferson Senior Center where she works with seniors on range-of-motion exercises.

“I look at it as occupational therapy,” she said. “We do a lot of exercises that help build strength in the knees so you can sit down and get back up.”

Easton said as people get older, they often need chair lifts to help them get out of a seated position. The exercises she teaches on Tuesdays and Thursdays help seniors develop the muscles needed to help them out of a seated position a little more easily.

Participants start out marching, to build up their heart rate. From there, the class moves into squats and then they focus on working with weights, Easton said.

Everyone works at their own pace. The weights range from 1-pound to 4-pounds or participants can elect to work without the weights as well, she said.

“Then we use bands for stretching,” Easton said.

Participants then work with exercise balls to work various muscles throughout their bodies. Easton moves the group to the walls for a number of stretches to round out the class, she said.

“We try to keep the atmosphere friendly,” Easton said. “We like to chat about the news and daily events.”

Sandy Bryson said she enjoys coming to the class.

“It’s fun,” she said. “We share stories and all that.”

Easton said she volunteers at the senior center because she is passionate about exercise.

“My feeling is those who exercise stay well,” she said. “I like to encourage people to exercise.”

The range-of-motion class is offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Jefferson Senior Center. Easton said she usually gets there at about 9:30 a.m. for anyone who doesn’t mind stretching on a mat, but it is not a requirement.

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