A nicely packaged, highly original instructional guide for seniors that blends exercises for body and mind.
There are countless health books that target the aging American population, but this book takes a decidedly different approach. Peterson, an expert in kinesiology—the study of human movement—has created a program that she says “brings integrated new ways of moving to the elders” by combining movement with cognitive skills. The author points out that as people age, they may experience cognitive decline as well as a loss of balance, and she notes that “falling is the leading cause of injury-related death among people age 65 and older.” Her program employs a coordinated combination of sensory exercises and movement activities to “challenge the brain and body simultaneously.” After a brief, easy-to-understand explanation of the overall concept, Peterson suggests a one-hour session that includes a warm-up and two series of exercises to “bring the senses into harmony.” She then presents each “movement” as a menu of discrete exercises from which the participant may choose. Every exercise has a meaningful name; “The Owl,” for example, is a neck-and-shoulder activity that releases tension and promotes focus and concentration. Peterson includes an explanation of each exercise’s purpose and step-by-step instructions for completing it. She also provides high-quality, full-color photos of happy seniors doing the exercises and having fun. The book is well-organized and well-written, and Peterson supplements the text with a website, www.MoveWithBalance.org, which features videos of each exercise. She also provides independent evaluations and outside commentary regarding her program at the end of the book.
An engaging, useful guidebook for seniors who want to maintain their senses of balance—and balance their senses.