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The Journal on Active Aging brings articles of value to professionals dedicated to older-adult quality of life. Content sweeps across the active-aging landscape to focus on education and practice. Find articles of interest by searching the article archives in three ways: Enter a keyword in the articles search bar; click on search by topic; or type a keyword or phrase in the general search bar at the top of the page.

Topic- Community design

 

Capitalizing on wellness market trends by Gene Guszkowski, AIA-4185

Capitalizing on wellness market trends by Gene Guszkowski, AIA

The economic downturn has hit the construction and development industry hard, and new construction projects in the senior living industry have suffered accordingly. However, with each passing day of this slow recovery, some people become frailer and more forgetful, while others begin to proactively search for ways they can maintain an active lifestyle even while preparing for the uncertainty of the future. In short, recession or no recession, the demand increases for quality environments for older adults. As senior living communities strive to provide enhanced products and services, create exceptional experiences, and transcend market expectations, community leaders are acknowledging that the time to begin making capital improvements is now.

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Community design

Why retirement communities invest in new wellness centers by Marion Webb-4184

Why retirement communities invest in new wellness centers by Marion Webb

It’s no accident that retirement communities are pouring hundreds of thousands—even millions—of dollars into constructing or upgrading their wellness facilities to incorporate the latest equipment, therapy pools, outdoor and indoor classes and meditation gardens. That’s because many communities have come to believe that well-designed fitness centers will not only help improve the lives of current residents but also draw in new residents.

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Community design

Nature deficit: what it means for older adults, and how to address it among your constituents by Nancy Ceridwyn, MS, MEd-2056

Nature deficit: what it means for older adults, and how to address it among your constituents by Nancy Ceridwyn, MS, MEd

Richard Louv’s seminal work, Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature Deficit Disorder, sparked a movement that seeks to reconnect children to the natural world, with the goal of healing emerging mental and spiritual health effects and promoting physical activity.1 In this and subsequent work, Louv takes a close look at the cultural outcomes of a generation of children growing up indoors and in smaller spaces.

But what about the effects on older adults?

While nature deficit is not a medical diagnosis, Louv sees the term as a way to think about a problem for the entire population. Although the term is not found in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association, research over the past two decades on nature confirms negative effects from the loss of—and positive outcomes from engagement in—green spaces.

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Community design

Access to nature boosts physical activity among older adults, saves staff time by Susan Rodiek, Ph.D., NCARB-1829

Access to nature boosts physical activity among older adults, saves staff time by Susan Rodiek, Ph.D., NCARB

On September 13, 2010, my colleagues and I were gratified to receive a professional award from the American Society of Landscape Architects at the society’s annual meeting in Washington, DC. That award, and the recognition our team has received from numerous organizations that provide long-term care to older adults, reinforced the value of the time and effort we put into developing an instrument that makes environmental evaluations of assisted living communities more quantifiable and reliable, and enables providers to compare satisfaction-related outcomes associated with physical environments.

We developed the instrument based on seven key principles that evaluate specific environmental qualities in assisted living communities (For more information, see Principles for outdoor areas that encourage resident participation on page XX). We then identified up to 10 ratable items that appeared to be the main components of each principle, resulting in a total of 63 individual items, which we used in the evaluation tool. After evaluating 68 randomly selected communities in various parts of the United States, and surveying 1,560 residents and staff, we identified a number of landscape features that were strongly associated with outdoor usage.

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Community design

Why older-adult playgrounds present a world of possibilities by Marilynn Larkin, MA-1486

Why older-adult playgrounds present a world of possibilities by Marilynn Larkin, MA

At first glance, the words older-adult playground may seem like an oxymoron. Aren’t playgrounds for children? Well, yes and no. Most existing playgrounds were built with children in mind. But a new wave of playgrounds—born of an understanding of the value of play and conceived with older adults, or older adults and children, in mind—are moving off the drawing boards and into communities in the United States1 and beyond.

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Community design

Designing wellness facilities and living environments by Donna Jackel-1434

Designing wellness facilities and living environments by Donna Jackel

Choice is the buzzword in today’s housing market for older adults. The challenge, say experts, is how to meet the needs of current clients while building in flexibility for future residents.

The average age that people move into independent living communities is trending upward, rising from 80 to 84 over the past decade,1 according to Edie Smith, senior vice president and research director at Oxford, Mississippi-based ProMatura Group, a full-service market research and advisory firm specializing in age 50-plus consumers. Meanwhile, the needs and desires of the 78 million or so Baby Boomers in the United States2 are influencing everything from building design to dining services.

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Community design

Total items: 38

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