Strength training can help maintain and even improve overall health as we age. Benefits, particularly for older adults, include weight loss, mobility improvement and muscle mass retention, which can improve stability and help delay or even avoid surgery or disability.
Investing in Strength Training Equipment
Thanks to the generosity of community members, patients, staff and providers, the Wellness Center at Emory Decatur Hospital has made a significant investment of over $73,000 in new strength equipment, which is already paying dividends for both members and fitness coaches.
“Members love the new equipment and appreciate the update,” says Lisa Gray, Wellness Center Group Fitness Coordinator and American Council on Exercise Certified Personal Trainer. “It is great to see the Wellness Center investing in our members’ health. The new equipment also gives members additional options they didn’t previously have and it helps that they have access to a coach to walk them through how to use it.”
The new equipment is just the latest in a series of improvements at the facility which was the first medical fitness center in Georgia to be certified by the Medical Fitness Association in 2017. This designation assures members that they are receiving customized fitness information based on their abilities, medical status and health goals.
Georgia Barkers is a retired registered nurse whose 46-year career included service in the Army Nurse Corps. She has been a member of the Wellness Center for over a decade and has witnessed the enhancements over the years.
“I joined the Wellness Center in 2009 after I had my first hip surgery,” Barkers says. “Initially, I tried water aerobics, then I eventually wanted something more strenuous.”
Gray began incorporating the new strength training machines into Barkers’ twice-weekly one-hour workouts. Barkers credits the added physical challenge from the strength equipment with helping to achieve one of her primary fitness goals. “I’ve been trying to strengthen my right knee and hold off on replacement surgery,” says Barkers.
The two bonded as Barkers began achieving her health goals. They learned they shared similar experiences as military veterans.
“I love working out with Lisa because she provides encouragement,” says Barkers. “We set goals in our individualized training sessions.”
“The multi trainer machine is great because I can do an entire workout from legs to arms to abs all on this one machine,” says Gray. “The new equipment has been incredibly beneficial with training. When there is a muscle imbalance, the multi trainer machine allows for corrective exercise. The new machines even count how many reps you do, but they only count the good ones, so they don’t let you cheat.”
“The Wellness Center is a great resource, not only for Emory Decatur Hospital patients and staff, but for the entire community,” says Amanda Thomas, Senior Manager of the Wellness Center/Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab. “Donor funding has enabled us to make a significant investment in our facility and in the health of our members and community with the addition of cutting edge strength training equipment.”
About the Wellness Center at Emory Decatur Hospital
The Wellness Center is an 18,000 square feet, fully equipped fitness facility complete with an indoor pool and indoor track. It is located on the ground floor of the 2665 Professional Building on the campus of Emory Decatur Hospital, 2701 North Decatur Road, Decatur, Georgia 30033.