Survey Says

Ever wonder what social media everyone is using?  How about where they get their health information?

I did a brief survey of the people that take my fitness classes as well as members of another exercise class that I attend. First, I want to thank those who did complete the survey, it was so kind. It is important to note that both of these exercise groups are geared toward seniors. Admittedly, it is a skewed group because they are coming to an exercise class. The number of respondents was small, but it gave me a good pulse on this particular demographic in my geographic area. I am guessing if you are reading T60+, that your responses may be similar because of your interest in your health and wellness.

The Results

Total respondents: 20

Social Media

The primary social media preferences are Facebook and Instagram.  For those of you who are reading this, you can follow me on Facebook at T60+.  My Instagram activity is pretty paltry, but it will be more robust in the autumn. My plan is to add some short videos and other fun items.

Communication

Most of the respondents preferred email communication. Text messaging was a close second.  Hopefully, we have not lost the art of sending letters and thank you notes written by hand.  They are so lovely to write and receive.

How do you get your exercise?

Exercise

This group of respondents self-selected to exercise classes.  Additionally, there were some who, in addition to the classes, also worked out alone and/or had personal trainers.  As a certified personal trainer, I believe that if you work with a trainer when you are older you need to find someone who is versed in functional movement.  What is functional movement? 

Functional movement is movement patterns that you can do in the gym or home that support daily activities of life, work, and sports. A good trainer who works with older adults should know and understand how movement patterns integrate with our health and fitness.  Let’s take the example of picking up a laundry basket or carrying groceries.  The hip performs a hinge motion when picking up and putting down heavy items. Don’t forget the use of your legs, instead of your back for picking up and replacing heavy items.  If you aren’t able to hinge your hips properly and use your legs, chances are you will injure your back at some point when picking up a heavy load.  That is why it is important to do hinge work and squats in the gym.

How do you carry your laundry?

Let’s take another example using the laundry basket or groceries.  Now you are holding it in front of you and it is difficult to see where you are going.  Can you feel where your feet are?  Can you feel your feet? Can you use the feeling in your feet to help you navigate the stairs or curb? How do you balance that basket without falling?  Is your core strong?  All of these things are included in functional movement and should be part of your exercise workout.

A good trainer will help you work on these items to ensure you are meeting your short and long-term movement goals for lifelong health, flexibility, strength and vitality.

“One issue with the explosion in popularity of boot camps is that so many people who are moving poorly are diving in and exacerbating injuries,” Mark Snow says.  “You have one foot on the brake and one foot on the gas at the same time. That’s not good for the engine.”

Motivation

This is an area where I have a keen interest.  What moves a person from a precontemplation state to finally take action and then stick to the plan. The activity can be anything from a starting a diet, joining a gym, learning a new language, or any number of things.  Motivation is very much individualized. What works for one person may or may not work for another.

The answers surrounding why they kept going to class was twofold: they enjoyed being fit and their friends were there.  Money also played a role.  If you are paying for something, chances are you will show up. I personally believe that social interaction is even more important than money. I see this in my classes and other classes. Studies have shown the power of the tribe. These exercise groups are a great example of a tribe.

Diet

The results were split. Some followed a particular diet and others followed no diet at all. There were a variety of diets that the responders preferred.  The diets included keto, lactoovo-fish, gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian.  My favorite diet plan that was mentioned was portion control! Bravo to that person.

Source of Health Information

The respondents obtained the majority of their health information from their healthcare provider.  That is great news. I believe there should be a caveat. How often do you visit your healthcare provider and for how long?  Those with a concierge physician would likely have more time with their physician, but for the majority of us, it is a short visit for a specific problem.  Can we really get all of our health questions answered in that short time, or even during a longer visit such as an annual physical?  How do the gaps of information get filled in?  This group responded that they get additional information from either magazines or websites.

I admit I do read lots of magazines that are full of health information to share.  One thing to think about when reading the latest trend in health and wellness is the source of that information? Is it from a research paper?  Who did the study? It is from someone who claims that have the knowledge or is really expert in the field.  Just because they have a degree, does not always make them an expert.  That’s why we have people trying so many different diets, exercises and supplements.  The marketing is so enticing that we are sure it will help us look and feel better.  Won’t it?

That is the purpose of this website.  We look at the research and the popular health trends to help give our readers a deeper understanding of its source and validity.  You must ultimately decide what you believe and do not. We may not always get it right, but our goal is to help you ask the deeper questions, think critically and have a few more tools in your toolkit when you do see your healthcare provider or make your own healthcare choices.

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