Original Medicare does not offer gym membership. However, you can keep those New Year’s resolutions and enjoy traveling because many Medicare Advantage plans and a few Medicare Supplement plans do offer free gym membership. Another perk: You are not limited to one. You can go to all participating gyms offered by your plan across the country. Personally, I go to two different gyms. Why? Sometimes it is my busy schedule, and I enjoy certain class instructors over others. Once you confirm your member ID, keep it in your wallet. That is your ticket to check out as many gyms as possible and frequent them as often as you like. I like water aerobics, strength training, yoga, and line dancing and I’m interested in learning pickleball, the fastest-growing sport in America. Who says exercise has to be boring? And most of all, I meet my peers, my people.



Some free memberships are offered through Silver Sneakers, Renew Active, and Silver and Fit. These programs also offer options to support your healthy aging journey like “get fit at home” kits, live streaming, on-demand videos, YouTube, healthy food plans, and coaching. And many Medicare plans will reward you for exercising with gift cards and other incentives. Each of these programs has a network of gyms where you can go, in most cases without a charge. Some gyms may offer a basic membership, with others allowing access to all their classes and amenities. Let’s break these down and identify some of the differences.

Silver Sneakers has 16,000 gyms, is the most well-known program, and has over 80 group classes offering strength, balance, cardio, and yoga. They offer 3 exercise versions. Depending on your mobility and flexibility, you can choose from standing, standing while holding onto a chair, or sitting. Silver Sneakers offers both in-gym and at-home fitness programs, such as on-demand and videos.

Renew Active has 22,000 gyms and offers full gym membership and online programs. Staying Sharp focuses on brain health and includes fun activities like interactive challenges, videos, and games. Stay Connected provides social activities through local health and wellness classes, events like outdoor exercise, and some hobby-type events. You can also stay socially connected by joining Fitbit online. It is offered for free, and a Fitbit device is not needed.

Silver and Fit has 14,000 gyms and offers both in-gym and fitness-at-home workouts. They encourage exercise by offering fresh content daily on their home workouts which helps keep you motivated. Their Well Being Club is designed to help members enrich and connect through community in-person meetups.

LifeTime created ARORA, a program designed for older adults that provides strength, balance, cardio, yoga, dance, barre, and water aerobics. Some locations offer amenities such as indoor and outdoor leisure and lap pools, whirlpools, water slides, and rock walls, as well as sports like basketball, squash, and pickleball. Some even offer office space, inside and outdoor cafes, spa services, onsite chiropractic care, child centers, and infant rooms.

Bonnie Dobbs is a sought-after speaker, writer, and educator on Medicare. The AJC chose her to be the Medicare expert for their Aging in Atlanta series, and she is a contributing author in a book featuring 20 top senior industry experts in the US that was recently released on Amazon by the National Aging in Place Council. Bonnie is a broker contracted with multiple insurance carriers and has a team of agents licensed in Georgia and several other states. For more information call 770-373-7541.

If you or an aging loved one is considering Elder Care Services in Roswell GA please contact the caring staff at CaraVita Home Care today. (770) 643-1712
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