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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.

Energize participants and revitalize staff with Active Aging Week 2021-8773

Energize participants and revitalize staff with Active Aging Week 2021

Active Aging Week felt especially poignant in 2020. Led by the International Council on Active Aging and presented by Humana, this observance has brought people together in North America and beyond every fall to celebrate aging, older-adult health and wellness and the ability to live as fully as possible at any age. Local host organizers have challenged themselves to come up with creative and customized low-to-no-cost wellness activities and events. And they have delivered experiences that energized participants, volunteers and staff alike with their positivity, fun and camaraderie. Fast forward to a global pandemic. Given concerns about the effects of social isolation and loneliness on the physical and mental health of older adults, Active Aging Week seemed particularly needed in 2020. Yet was it still possible to offer programming in such uncertain times given the changing public health guidance and COVID waves? Local host organizations in North America and beyond stepped up with a resounding yes. Programs offered virtually or safely in person gave participants opportunities to connect, to engage in wellness activities and to celebrate aging well even in the most challenging of times. In 2021, as ICAA marks its 20th anniversary, Active Aging Week reminds us how far we have come together. With October on the horizon, now is the time to ramp up planning for the week and, for those who have yet to do so, to register as an Official Active Aging Week Host Site.

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ICAA initiatives

How NuStep’s journey continues to influence the industry by Colin Milner-8772

How NuStep’s journey continues to influence the industry by Colin Milner

The International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) and NuStep, LLC, have enjoyed a nearly 20-year partnership promoting whole-person wellness in the senior living and wellness industry. Though many companies have come and gone in the active-aging space over this time, NuStep has not only pioneered recumbent training products, but also shown exceptional commitment to the senior living and wellness industry. And the company is poised to bring more innovation into the next phase of the industry’s evolution. Wellness is no longer a movement or a trend. It has become a way of life globally. Although senior living used to be all about healthcare, providers today are focusing more heavily on whole-person wellness. So, a significant shift is taking place. To take a forward look at where the active-aging industry is headed and to celebrate a milestone 20th-anniversary year for ICAA and the ICAA community, I recently interviewed NuStep’s CEO, Eric Sklar, for the Journal on Active Aging. The exciting part is that with the industry changing so quickly, it’s really about how the partnership has evolved to address what’s happening today.

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Business profiles

Furnishing fitness facilities for actively aging adults by Julie King, MS-8768

Furnishing fitness facilities for actively aging adults by Julie King, MS

The active-aging industry is looking ahead across North America and beyond. Even as pandemic restrictions ease in many regions--at varying paces and to differing degrees--concerns will continue about virus variants, vaccination rates and efficacy, breakthrough COVID cases in vaccinated individuals, and infection outbreaks or clusters. Despite these uncertainties, organizations are now wisely considering where to invest as they strive to reset their businesses. What do age 50+ customers want today? And which products, services and amenities will appeal to the specific clientele your organization serves? "Well-equipped fitness and wellness facilities are more crucial than ever," according to International Council on Active Aging CEO Colin Milner. "The global health crisis has overwhelmingly demonstrated the value of staying as healthy and physically active as possible--a message your customers and prospects will have absorbed many times over since January 2020."

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Management

Beaming brightly: ICAA Nustep Beacon Award winners radiate exceptional cultures of wellness by Julie King, MS-8765

Beaming brightly: ICAA Nustep Beacon Award winners radiate exceptional cultures of wellness by Julie King, MS

In a year like no other, 2020 presented senior living communities throughout North America with myriad challenges to deliver multidimensional wellness to residents and staff. And yet, fueled by commitment, creativity and "can-do" attitude, providers cultivated novel opportunities that empowered individuals to enhance their well-being and quality of life amid a global pandemic. For the second consecutive year, the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) and NuStep, LLC, a leading manufacturer of recumbent cross-trainers, have recognized 25 communities as the "Best in Wellness" for fostering an exceptional culture and serving as examples of excellence. The 2020 ICAA NuStep Beacon Award winners deserve special credit for persevering in the face of unprecedented obstacles and ongoing changes. ... The top five communities also earn the prestigious ICAA NuStep Pinnacle Award, which signifies exemplary wellness performance. Here we share a glimpse of what makes these role models so successful at enriching lives throughout their communities.

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Business profiles

Taking a digital dive into the lives of

Taking a digital dive into the lives of "Active Aging consumers" by Jeff Weiss

As a company with a mission to break the myths and to crush the stereotypes around aging, we see examples every day of the older population embracing a digital life. This should surprise no one. The older population has grown up with tech and, in many ways, has had to adapt to the rapid pace of digital change as much as anyone--going from typewriters and dial phones in childhood, to cordless phones and computers in youth or adulthood, to mobile Bluetooth and Wi-Fi-enabled devices in mid- or later-life. Still, cold hard numbers talk--especially for skeptical marketers--so Age of Majority saw an opportunity to help quantify the digital experience of adults we term "Active Aging consumers," or Active Agers (that is, people ages 55+ who are digitally, socially, mentally and physically active). ... [W]e undertook one of our most comprehensive research efforts to date to map out the digital landscape among Active Agers. ... The findings will likely be a wake-up call to marketers who underestimate the role of digital devices in the lives of the older population as a means of serving and engaging this group.

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Market research

Better together: Covenant Living navigates COVID with community and communication by Jana Decker by BS-8682

Better together: Covenant Living navigates COVID with community and communication by Jana Decker by BS

Covenant Living Communities and Services is rooted in ministry. Our Illinois-based organization has served older adults as an outreach ministry of the Evangelical Covenant Church since 1886. That year, our flagship community, Covenant Home of Chicago (known at the time as the Home of Mercy) was founded to provide care "to the sick, to orphaned children and to the frail elderly." Today, as a nonprofit provider of senior services and among the largest seniors housing providers in the United States, Covenant Living serves 5,400 residents at 17 retirement communities in 9 states. Our continuing care communities offer independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing, memory care and rehabilitation services. In March 2020, after more than 130 years of growth and change (and 100+ years since the Spanish Flu), our organization suddenly and unexpectedly found itself on the brink of a pandemic. We kicked into action immediately as COVID-19 shutdowns took place, knowing that the health and safety of our residents is the highest priority. Initially, that meant residents sheltering in place with no access to the many amenities that were part of normal life. Days turned into weeks, and like many other organizations, we realized this crisis situation was not a passing storm. The pandemic was not going away any time soon. It was clear our organization urgently needed to redirect focus to long-term solutions for supporting and engaging residents within the parameters of COVID.

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Business profiles

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