Most people can describe where they were, who they were with and the emotions they felt on the morning of September 11, 2001. Part of our global reality, individual reactions cannot be denied, difficult as they are. Today we remember the day that shocked and shook the world with a painful look back.

This is also a time to look ahead at how to mitigate lingering negative responses. Living in constant concern, anxiety and fear robs the good from each day. Deep breathing and reading comics may be ways to cope. Talking to a positive person might be another. And still a third: exercise.

Extensive research supports the value of physical exercise, not just for physical fitness, but also for mental health. According to an April, 2021 article in “Fullscript” blog, “Exercise may improve adverse mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. Aerobic exercise, resistance training, and yoga have been found to improve specific aspects of mental health. Exercising regularly may be the most important factor involved in experiencing these benefits.”

Oakmont Health Initiative’s free fitness classes offer aerobic exercise, weight training and yoga postures, all under the thoughtful and supportive guidance of nationally accredited fitness instructor, JoRene. You are invited, in-person at Berger, with masks, or zoom at home, without masks. Your choice, your tool to dealing with life’s devastations and delights….in an affirmative way.

Equipment for JoRene’s class: Until further notice, masks are now necessary. Non-skid mats, 3# hand weights, athletic shoes (supportive but not too grippy,) and a water bottle – hydration revitalizes. Fragrance-Free, please. Share the floor with kindness.

Word to the wise: For your safety, good balance and lateral movement are needed for quick aerobic moves. A fall may cause serious injury. Check with your doctor before beginning any exercise regimen. If you have shoulder, back, knee problems, anything that is painful, it is advisable to join a smaller, well-supervised class first, and consult a personal trainer or medical professional to learn modifications that are suitable to your condition. Participants need to use their judgment and body awareness… altering each exercise to prevent injury.  Be careful dear ones. Welcome!

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