Where fun and fitness collide
Kelliegh Bradley gets seniors up and moving at LOACC
National Fitness Day has become a really big holiday at the Lake Oswego Adult Community Center, thanks to Kelliegh Bradley.
Bradley is recreation supervisor for the City of Lake Oswego, plus an award-winning fitness competitor, weightlifter and a fitness model. So when it comes to fitness, she doesnt mess around. But that doesnt mean fitness cant be fun for elder citizens. Certainly you cant have more fun than dancing the hula.
On National Senior Health and Wellness Day we had a luau theme, Bradley said. We wanted to have fun so we did the hula.
Bradleys senior hula dancers performed so well that they won applause from the lunch crowd, which can be a notoriously tough audience to please.
Besides the hula, Bradley pulled out all the stops to make her luau a success, including pouring non-alcoholic mai tais, serving a roast pig, fitness demonstrations, dance aerobics, golf, yoga (gentle and challenging) and strength training.
It is events like this that have won the ACC recognition as having one of the nations best fitness programs from the National Council on Aging.
Now more than ever we are implementing levels for senior fitness, ACC center manager Ann Adrian said. Kelliegh is responsible for implementing these levels.
Of course, Bradley cannot always use roast pig and mai tais to entice elder citizens to pursue fitness. But since starting the ACC program three years ago she has done an exceptional job of keeping things fun and interesting for ACC patrons, and she is always looking to expand what the program offers. Bradley got an idea of how much impact she is having when 17 seniors signed up to take the National Senior Fitness Test on National Senior Health and Wellness Day.
Fitness tests give us an idea of where we should be heading, Bradley said. We then achieve a strategic plan to offer you to improve your strength, balance and flexibility. Some seniors want more socialization. Others want you to push them to better fitness.
Since Kelliegh started our fitness program shes tried to have classes for every need and interest, Adrian said. Like more tap dancing.
The ACC has been able to pull aces out of the hole when it comes to such classes because it has instructors like Nancy Bantz, a former professional dancer. Such options are always welcome because when it comes to demand in national physical fitness trends, older adult fitness ranks third.
Adrian loves the success stories from those who take up fitness classes at the ACC. Like the one about the man who could barely get out of his car and had to use a motorized device to get anywhere. But then he took a class in tai chi, and it revolutionized his life.
That was a near miracle, but not every fitness success story at the ACC is so dramatic. It can be as simple as dancing the hula.
For more about programs at the Lake Oswego Adult Community Center, go to ci.oswego.or.us/acc.