Seniors in Shape program
Each year in Idaho, ambulances respond to over 6,000 calls resulting from falls in the home and elsewhere.  Judy DeHaas and Ginny Acheson from St. Mary’s Hospital Physical Therapy are loading up some resistance bands which will used in the Seniors in Shape program as part of their strength and balance training.Many of those calls are from senior citizens.  According to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare website, unintentional falls affect one in three adults, age 65 or older, at least once a year.  
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that many people who fall develop a fear of falling which may cause themto limit their activities and being less active which leads to a reduction in mobility and physical fitness which increases a person’s risk of falling.
To help seniors in the Cottonwood area avoid falls and gain greater confidence to avoid a fear of falling an initial Seniors in Shape program will be offered on Tuesday, November 22 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at the Cottonwood Community Center.  It is free and open to anyone interested.
“If there is enough interest we’ll continue to offer the program two times per week.  The focus will be on exercises that improve balance, mobility, muscular strength and flexibility.  We will start with warm up moves then use resistance bands to strengthen muscles and end with a cool down,” said Shelli Schumacher, trained leader.  “We’ll also provide information on how to fall proof a home and take steps to reduce the risk of falling.”
Schumacher will facilitate the class with Annabelle Gonzales.  They will do a pretest during each participant’s initial session.  In similar classes offered in other communities in a post test, offered six to ten weeks after the initial class, participants showed improvement. 
“At our first class on November 22 we’ll survey the participants about a schedule for future classes.  We’ve talked about Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 9:30, but if afternoon classes work better for interested people, we’ll do whatever works best,” said Schumacher.   “If someone can’t attend the first class, but wants to join us they can call me and let me know what days and times work for them and we’ll figure that in when we set the schedule.”
Schumacher can be reached at 208-962-5371.  
Comfortable, easy to move in clothes and closed toe shoes are recommended. 
The classes are being sponsored by St. Mary’s Hospital and Clinics.  They will be offered as a public service to any age, any gender and people in any physical condition.  “This series of classes will complement the yoga classes being offered on Wednesday evenings in the Cottonwood Community Center,” said Jeanette Gorman, SMHC Community Relations Coordinator.  “We stress the importance of preventive measures to ensure continuing good health and physical fitness.”

Diabetes support group to meet
The November meetings of the St. Mary’s Hospital and Clinics Diabetes Support Groups will be held on Tuesday, November 15th in Kamiah at the Kamiah Bible Becky Ewing, RN, Certified Diabetes Educator, is a co-facilitator at the Kamiah and Grangeville monthly diabetes support groups meetings.  Cottonwood area residents are welcome to attend either session.Church from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. and on Wednesday, November 16th from noon to 3:00 in the meeting room of Oscar’s Restaurant on Main St in Grangeville.  There will be a no host lunch from 12:00 to 1:00 followed by the educational session from 1:00 to 3:00.
The topic for this month’s session will be “Testing Your Blood Sugar and Taking Your Blood Pressure”.  Becky Ewing, RN and Vicki Berg, RN; both Certified Diabetes Educators from St. Mary’s Hospital will facilitate the meetings.  They will discuss when the best time is to test your blood sugar, how often and what your target level should be.  They will also explain the proper way to take your own blood pressure and which equipment is the best to use.
“We hope that people will come with questions but leave with answers,” commented Ewing.  “It seems like there is always something new to learn about this disease.  Members of the community who either have diabetes or live with someone who does are invited to attend this session and any and all future sessions.” 
The support groups are provided as a public service by the St. Mary’s Hospital and their Kamiah and Grangeville Clinics.  The Kamiah meetings are held on the third Tuesday of each month and the Grangeville meetings are hosted on the third Wednesday of every month.  Members of the Cottonwood and surrounding communities are welcome at either meeting.

Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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503 King St.
P.O. Box 157
Cottonwood, ID 83522-0157
Fax 208-962-7131
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