"There are so many talented professionals working to help older adults maintain their vitality and quality of life. The trouble is that they are all over town," says Equinox Village's Executive Director Kirt Sampson. "We wanted to bring these professionals and make them easier for the public to access as well."
The focus is on prevention. There are three fitness instructors in the group: Anna Bushee, yoga instructor; Rich Marantz, Tai Chi instructor; and Chris Uchida, balance and fitness instructor. Each holds weekly classes for residents and members of the public at Equinox Village. Taken together, the classes are an exciting and effective method for staying in good shape.
Acupuncturist Cynthia Kirby Reilly and Massage Therapist Lee Ferguson work with patients traditional medical practices to offer holistic treatment for symptoms related to aging. And for those who relate feeling good with looking good, cosmetologist Dineen Bills takes appointments in her Equinox Village salon. Health and wellness education is yet another piece of the puzzle. Kylee Ryan, the wellness and activities coordinator plans educational events and screenings, so that residents and members of the public have the information they need to make good health choices. Recent topics have included hydration, joint health, hospice care, preparing important health-related documents and care-giver support.
Those who live at Equinox Village can also receive direct wellness support coordination from Ryan. Addressing all aspects of one's wellbeing one-on-one, Ryan helps resi dents resolve healthcare problems; arrange appointments; coordinate family members, friends, physicians and caregivers into a sup portive team; follow physicians' instructions; and prepare important wellness documents.
Residents of Equinox Village have access to healthy and delicious meals prepared by the community's executive chef, exclusive fitness classes, indoor swim spa and fitness center.
Karen O'Malley and Melissa Morrison, both from At Home Senior Care, work with residents and members of the public to ensure a safe and comfortable home for seniors who have aged into a situation where they need additional support with tasks of daily living.
Sampson, who is president of the Vermont Healthcare Association in addition to his work as executive director of Equinox Village, is available as an unbiased resource to individuals and families who are weigh ing health care and living situation options.
"This is an optimistic, proactive approach to aging. It's not the doctor's office. It's not the gym. This is holistic. We are tackling the important issues related to getting older, but we are doing it in a fun way, and we are doing it together," said Ryan.