2017-03-29 / Voice at the Shore

Free fitness classes keep seniors moving at Rosin Center

By ELLEN WEISMAN STRENGER
Voice shore editor


Instructor Rob Young described his class at the Beron-JOAS senior center as “a seated exercise class focusing on mobility, balance and fun.” Instructor Rob Young described his class at the Beron-JOAS senior center as “a seated exercise class focusing on mobility, balance and fun.” “Stretch, don’t kvetch!”

That is one of Herman Solof’s mottos about exercise. Solof, who is 95, is one of the many seniors who take exercise classes three times a week—on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays—at the Rosin Center, a senior center run by Beron- Jewish Older Adult Services (JOAS) in Atlantic City.

“I love life, so I go along with the program. G-d helps those who help themselves. It’s good for you, so do it!” said Solof.

Indeed, it is good for you. According to the National Institute on Aging, regular exercise helps older adults maintain their independence and is important for both physical and mental health. It can also benefit those with arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, balance problems and difficulty walking.


Personal trainer Rob Young teaches senior fitness at the Rosin Center on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays. Personal trainer Rob Young teaches senior fitness at the Rosin Center on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays. “It’s very good exercise,” said Bertha Borowick, age 98, of the Rosin Center fitness class, as she joined about a dozen other seniors getting ready to exercise on a wintery Friday morning.

Notably, no one wears special clothes or shoes for the class. Anyone who happens to be at the senior center, which offers a variety of activities every day, is welcome to take part. Two rows of chairs are set up for exercisers at the front of the room, although some seniors participate from wherever they happen to be sitting in the large, open room.

The half-hour class, taught by personal trainer Rob Young, starts out with seniors doing exercise while sitting in chairs. As the class progresses, those who are able do standing exercises as well. Young describes the class as “a seated exercise class focusing on mobility, balance and fun.”

“As long as you’re trying, that is what we’re looking for!” Young tells the seniors, as they follow his lead in doing seated toe-touches, punches and kicks, followed by stretches.

The class moves on to very modified jumping jacks—with claps but no jumps—then everyone sits back down to rest before doing abdominal work—seated crunches and “twisters.”

“I know you can do this,” Young tells Faye Stanger, as she and the others push through to the end of the class.

He’s right; Stanger finishes the class and feels better for having done it. “You’ve got to be strong!” she stressed.

Young, who has a long list of personal training credentials, recognizes that seniors’ fitness needs are very different from those of younger people. He began teaching at the senior center after an older woman he trained recommended him to the Rosin Center staff. He teaches all three morning fitness classes at the senior center, including a yoga class where seniors can stretch and strengthen while sitting in a chair.

After Young’s class concludes, the chairs are quickly moved aside as the center sets up for live music and dancing, which gives the seniors yet another opportunity to get up and move.

All fitness classes offered at the Rosin Center are free of charge. Transportation to the Rosin Center, which is located at 1102 Atlantic Avenue in Atlantic City, is also available from many locations. For more information on transportation, fitness classes and other activities offered by Beron-JOAS at the Rosin Center, call (609) 345- 5555. 

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