Fitness Made Easier

Three Tips To Help Medicare Advantage Enrollees Choose A No-Cost Or Low-Cost Gym Membership


(NAPSI)—It’s still Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment season and many fitness-minded folks are choosing to sign up for Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans because they appreciate the extra benefits such as subsidized gym memberships. If you have one of these plans, or you’re thinking of enrolling in one, then you may be ready to take the next step in your exercise journey by joining a new fitness center. Here are three tips to help you select the best fitness center for your needs:

1. Learn which gyms are subsidized through your Medicare Advantage program. Whether you currently belong to a gym and want to remain a member there, or if you want to try a new fitness center, Medicare Advantage may have you covered. Thousands of top-name gyms, fitness centers, YMCAs, and boutique fitness clubs across the country belong to fitness networks that honor Medicare Advantage memberships. You can call your Medicare Advantage plan directly to learn what fitness program they offer and what gyms near you participate. Options such as the Silver&Fit® Healthy Aging and Exercise program offer access to 18,000+ fitness centers across the nation. Programs like these also offer member benefits such as health coaching and a library of on-demand video workouts. Plus, members can enjoy Facebook Live workout classes or YouTube streaming classes. Whether you want to work out at home, get fit at the gym, or attend classes online, the Silver&Fit program offers something for everyone. 

2. Choose the right gym for your exercise needs. Ask yourself this question—what are the most important things that will keep you coming back to the gym in 2022? Do you have a yearning for yoga, a passion for Pilates or a goal to gain muscle? Then make sure the gym you select offers those options and more. If you love strength training, check that a gym offers various weight training machines and free weights. If you crave structured workout sessions, ask the gym for a class schedule so you can scout the options available. If you’re an older adult who enjoys low-impact water aerobics, seek out a gym with a pool. Today’s gyms offer many workout options, so investigate several. You can research gyms online by visiting the websites of programs such as the Silver&Fit program to see what gyms are in their network. Just enter your zip code and you’ll see what gyms are convenient for you. 

3. Choose a gym that will motivate you to work out. Research shows that people stay more motivated to work out when they can do it with a spouse or friend. Find a gym your spouse or friends will also enjoy, then work out together. Or join a gym that offers social events, such as lunches or coffees. Or meet new friends in your in-person classes. Another important motivating factor is location. Choosing a gym close to your home can help ensure that you go regularly. It may be especially helpful if you find one within walking distance. Your walk to the gym can serve as a warm-up and cool-down to start and end your gym session. Other amenities to keep in mind are access to showers and locker rooms and the cleanliness and safety of the gym. Many gyms provide hand sanitizer and equipment sanitizer stations as well as other COVID-safe protocols. Call the gyms you are considering to learn what their specific policies are. 

Always remember to consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine and to discuss what types of exercises are safest for you.

You can use the Medicare Advantage open enrollment period as an opportunity to plan how you’ll get back into your fitness routine—or to set new fitness goals. It’s never too late to get started. To learn whether your Medicare Advantage plan offers the Silver&Fit program, check:

"The SilverandFit Healthy Aging and Exercise program offers access to 18,000+ fitness centers across the nation. Programs like these also offer member benefits such as health coaching and a library of on-demand video workouts."