FUN & SAFE EXERCISE CLASSES for Older Adults & Seniors in Owen Sound ~ Seated Gentle & Slow Classes, Standing Active Classes & Lively, Faster Classes for Ladies 50+ ALL Classes are Low Impact ~ IMPROVE YOUR: Stamina ~ Core Strength ~ Balance ~ Flexibility ~ Endurance ~ Overall Muscle & Bone Strength ~ Circulation ~ Coordination & more!

  • LADIES 50+ Low Impact, Fast-paced Cardio, Strength, Abs/Core, Flexibility Exercise Classes
  • ACTIVE Seniors Low Impact Exercise Classes for Men & Women
  • SEATED Seniors Exercise Classes for Men & Women
  • SEATED Yoga (Stretch & Flexibility) Classes for Seniors
  • Walking with Poles: Classes & Demonstrations:  Poles are used in therapy following hip or knee surgery; as mobility aids for those inflicted with diseases such as Parkinson’s; or, for improved posture, balance & even for weight loss.
  • Arthritis Workshops for Seniors (can be provided as a weekly or monthly series to cover a variety of joints)
  • Individual Private Fitness Training for Men & Women over 50 (when scheduling permits)

Description and Benefits of Gentle Fit Exercise Classes

These low impact classes will benefit the participants’ overall health and functionality in their daily lives by:

Improving your Strength, Stamina, Balance, Circulation, Flexibility and your Cardiovascular & Respiratory Health.  Other benefits may include:  improved sleep and enhanced coordination skills.  The social aspect of gathering together in a group provides the ‘FUN’ factor, giving us a feeling of community spirit, as we meet new people and make new friends!

Click Here to view Class Schedules.

Each 60 minute Seated Senior’s Class is comprised of gentle seated exercises to improve cardiovascular health, overall flexibility and strength.  We stand for a total of 5 minutes for leg and core Strengthening exercises, to improve Balance, followed by 20 minutes of seated Strengthening exercises using therapy bands and balls, and end with a 10 minute Flexibility Stretch to help prevent pain due to stiffness. All the exercises are performed at the appropriate level of intensity for the participants involved. 

Each 60 minute Active Seniors Class for Men & Women is comprised of 30 minutes of Low Impact Cardiovascular & Balance Exercises performed to lively upbeat music, 20 minutes of SEATED Strengthening Exercises using resistance bands or therapy balls, and ends with a 10 minute Flexibility Stretch to help prevent pain due to stiffness.

Each 60 minute Ladies 50+ Gentle Fit Exercise Class is comprised of a Low Impact fast-paced, Cardio workout with lots of variety, performed to upbeat, lively music; plus strength training & abdominal work using a variety of equipment, and ending with a full body stretch to improve flexibility.  Please bring a mat or blanket for floor work.

Class Format:

  • A gentle warming up of all the joints & muscles
  • Moderate to vigorous cardio/aerobic endurance-style exercise (at the appropriate level for the participants involved)
  • Muscle & bone strengthening & exercises, utilizing small soft balls, resistance bands and, on occasion, light hand-held weights
  • Balance training
  • A cooling down period of relaxing & gently stretching out the major muscles

If you are unable to attend classes, other options are available.  We offer ‘One-on-One’ functional fitness training with Sally MacDonald, in your home or in our studio (when scheduling permits).  You may also purchase a DVD of a 20 minute Seated workout using balls and resistance bands for $5.00 (see VIDEOS tab) and do your own workout at home without the worry that you may perform an exercise unsafely.  For more information, please Click Here to send Sally a message.

It’s advisable, before starting any new physical activity program, to consult with your doctor or health care professional before you begin.

Click Here to view Class Schedules.

Description and Benefits of Private Fitness Training ‘One-on-One’

An Exercise program that is designed specifically for you can be highly beneficial to your health & well-being. What do YOU wish to achieve?

• Assistance with your physio therapy exercises, while you recover from surgery, injury or illness
• To improve your balance (which is proven to help prevent falls)
• To improve your bone strength & muscle strength (to help maintain your current level of independence)
• To improve or maintain your current Heart health
• To improve the circulation of your blood & lymphatic system (beneficial to diabetics & cancer survivors)
• To maintain & improve flexibility in your arthritic joints

Physical Activity Should be Enjoyable for YOU! Choose activities that YOU prefer. Choose to perform them seated or standing. Choose ½ hr. sessions to avoid fatigue or over-exertion, or choose 1 hr. sessions and combine activities such as those below. Equipment will be provided, such as small soft balls, resistance bands or hand-held weights.

• Gentle & Safe Stretching exercises for Arthritis and Relaxation
• Bone & Muscle Strengthening exercises using Resistance Bands or Hand Weights
• Walking for a Healthy Heart (or for Bone Health with added weight-bearing)
• Walking with Poles for improved balance, full body strengthening and optimal health

It’s advisable, before starting any physical activity program, to consult with your doctor or health care professional first.

Current Pricing in effect January 1, 2018 

Classes 1/2 hour = $25.00                                                                                                    Classes 1 hour = $30.00                                                                                                          Fee to participate in classes = $6.00 daytime classes / $8.00 evening classes                Single Adult ½ hour = $20.00
Single Adult 1 hour = $30.00
2 Adults together ½ hour = $25.00
2 Adults together 1 hour = $40.00

ABOUT SALLY MACDONALD

Sally is an Older Adult Fitness Specialist. She holds her C.C.A.A. (Canadian Centre for Activity & Aging, Western University) Fitness Instructor Certificate.  She also holds numerous certificates from various Senior’s Fitness courses and continues to further her education on a regular basis.

Sally is fully insured as an F.P.A.O. Registered Fitness and Health Professional with the Fitness Practitioners Association of Ontario and is certified in First Aid & CPR.

EXPERIENCE:

She has twelve years experience instructing Group Exercise Classes in fitness facilities in Owen Sound.  To gain experience, she became a V.O.N. volunteer instructor.  After completing their training programs, she was mentored by several fantastic, experienced Seniors fitness instructors, in leading the S.M.A.R.T. (Seniors Maintaining Active Roles Together) Group Exercise Classes in our Community.  Then she furthered her credentials, obtaining her S.F.I.C. Certification from Western University’s Canadian Centre for Activity and Aging; and then became employed by the Grey Bruce V.O.N. as a paid instructor.

CURRENTLY:

Sally is on staff as a Senior’s Fitness Instructor for the Grey Bruce V.O.N. and instructs several classes weekly, both in the Community and our local Retirement Homes. Please contact Grey Bruce V.O.N. at 519-371-5331 for more information on the S.M.A.R.T. Exercise & Fall Prevention Program!

Aside from the V.O.N. classes, Sally also instructs many different types, of Seniors’ exercise classes in Owen Sound, for every level of fitness ability.  We have morning and afternoon classes; and for the 50+ busy or working women or those who prefer LOW IMPACT classes; we offer early evening classes, twice weekly.  These are LIVELY & FUN, cardio and core strengthening classes. Class descriptions, times & locations, can be found under the CLASSES tab.

HISTORY:

HOW I BECAME A FITNESS INSTRUCTOR by Sally MacDonald

Like everyone, I worked at various jobs throughout my life & found that many of them caused me injuries, problems & subsequent pain, some of it at that time, some later in life……delivery driver: neck & hips…..dance teacher: knees & hips…..desk job: neck, back & knees.  I didn’t know what type of work I should be doing that would prevent further problems. 

The answer came to me when I read an ad in the paper by the V.O.N., inviting ‘me’ to become a volunteer senior’s fitness instructor!  They were offering 8 weeks of ‘1 day’ FREE training, to become a certified VON Fall Prevention Senior’s fitness instructor; if I agreed to volunteer 1 hour per week, teaching a class, for 1 year, following my certification.  This sounded like a perfect way to launch myself into a new career that would benefit my body, instead of harming it!  And, one that I could possibly do forever!  I became very excited at this prospect & registered for the program, booked off those 8 Mondays from my desk job & proceeded with great gusto to try something new!

As life would have it, after completing most of the course, I applied for a position as a Health & Wellness Coach, at a new health & wellness facility, soon to be opening up, & was hired! The training was extensive, I learned so much about vitamins, nutrition, diet & exercise. 

The first 2 hired were myself & Deborah Dempsey (current owner of A Woman’s Journey) who taught me numerous cardiovascular exercises & I soon began teaching classes!  Having taught dance for 10 years, I was a natural & found this to be highly enjoyable & rewarding.  I became very fit & knowledgeable, and eventually became the manager! 

I loved my job but, sadly, after several years, the business closed up….so Deborah opened her own studio, including a fully stocked gym, called A Woman’s Journey – Women’s Fitness & Wellness Facility, where we continued working together for the next 6 years. 

I worked very hard learning more specifics about fitness, including weight-training with machines & free weights, yoga & Pilates, & so much more!  Basically Deb gave me a free education in fitness, while I worked as the office manager who taught a few classes in the evenings. 

During one of our slow periods when my hours were reduced, I decided to reconnect with the VON again.  After all, without that first course, I would never have gotten into fitness!  I now had time to volunteer a few hours & was eager to reconnect.  I spoke with Dorothy Embacher at the VON & she was pleasantly shocked when I told her I ‘owed her 1 year of teaching’…..she said no one had ever called to say that before! 

We soon became friends but more importantly, she was willing to mentor me!  She opened my eyes to the world of older adults & the aging process that our bodies go through. She made me realize that exercising helps the older generation stay vital & healthy!  I continuing working for & mentoring under Deborah, while Dorothy continued to inspire, teach & encourage me to ‘want to work with older adults’!  I was now in my early 60’s, still very fit & full of energy & teaching high level classes.  However, learning so much about the aging body, was re-shaping my thinking.  I began to wonder if I should be exercising at this high level.  I became a VON certified Fall Prevention Instructor of both levels, seated & standing classes.  I began volunteer teaching finally!  Working both jobs was completely fulfilling, but Dorothy kept working with me & encouraging me to continue my education!  She was the facilitator who mentored & tested me, while I achieved several more certifications through Western University’s SFIC program. 

The next few years saw many changes to the world of Seniors’ Fitness.  The government jumped aboard & VON was chosen to deliver their Fall Prevention classes, now known as the S.M.A.R.T. Program, in the community & now also in the Retirement Homes!  This meant that they needed MANY more instructors & that some of us would be PAID instructors!  I was SO glad that Dorothy had encouraged me to obtain all of the certifications necessary to be hired!  Within a few short months, I found myself teaching 18 classes per week!  I had given up my position as office manager, but continued teaching 3 evening Gentle Fit classes at the gym, that I had designed for the ‘over 50 woman.’  Dorothy Embacher was a participant at some of these classes! 

Over time, I found my life becoming repetitive, so I made a few changes & started my own small business ‘Sally Sunshine Gentle Fitness.’  I opened a few classes in condos & apt. buildings which became very successful.  This project has been so much fun, not to mention rewarding; from getting it off the ground, to watching it grow to 12 classes including: Men’s Weight Training, Chair Yoga, Ladies 50+ Cardio/Abs, Active Seniors & Seated Seniors. 

Now that I am 65, I’m comfortable with 11 classes per week!  My business is going strong with 8 different classes, & I still teach 3 for the VON, including one for those inflicted with Parkinson’s disease.  When VON classes are cancelled for vacation weeks, the Retirement Homes always hire me privately to teach their classes!  It’s nice to be in demand!  Thanks again Deborah Dempsey & Dorothy Embacher!! 

Being a Senior’s Fitness Instructor is a fabulously rewarding job that you can do for the rest of your life & I PLAN TO DO JUST THAT! 

Who knows, maybe I’ll make history & will still be teaching at 90!  Fingers crossed!