Pella Chronicle

December 1, 2012

Vriendschap Village establishes 'Fit and Fall Proof'

Physical activity program to promote healthy living for Pella-area seniors


The Chronicle

Pella — Vriendschap Village retirement community recently established “Fit and Fall Proof,” a program that promotes physical activity among Pella-area seniors, run by Central College students.

“We based our program on the Idaho Department of Public Health’s Fit and Fall Proof program, created in 2004,” said Executive Director Brenda Colvin. “It was developed to increase activity levels in a social setting. The ultimate goal of the program is to decrease falls in the older adult population.”

Vriendschap Village’s Fit and Fall Proof program is run by Pella’s Central College students who are enrolled in the course, “Fitness After Fifty” as a part of their Exercise Science degree program.

Katelin Gannon, M.S., C.S.C.S., Central College’s Exercise Science lecturer leads the program with Vriendschap Village residents. The three-times-per-week sessions last between 35-45 minutes and include four segments: a warm-up, mobility and balance using body weight, strength exercise using resistance bands and a cool-down.

Vriendschap Village residents are participating in this program as a part of a study with Central College.

“Prior to beginning this program, we had each resident participate in assessment and physical performance tests to evaluate their abilities and a similar assessment will be completed once the program is over in eight to ten weeks, to monitor their improvement.” said Gannon. “Our main objective is to avoid inactivity. This goal allows us to find ways to improve both aerobic and muscular strength for the seniors.”

“The Fit & Fall Proof program is a great opportunity. We’re learning how to exercise our joints, knees and overall bodies to stay healthy,” says Vriendschap Village resident Flora Kooistra. “The partnership with Central College is wonderful – the students are very knowledgeable and helpful.”

Currently, 25 residents participate in Fit and Fall Proof at Vriendschap Village.