I have a 60 year old client that right now does not have access to medical care to be seen by a physician, to begin a program. However, she is attempting to change her sedentary lifestyle and begin things such as simple as walking instead of sitting all day, swimming when able, and recently I gave her a wellness package of a Stability Ball, Resistance Bands, Stretch Bands and Exercise Loop Bands.
I want to help her get started and basically know all the many things she can’t do but would like to know what she can do. She has not worked out in over 10 years, she is about 40 lbs overweight (mainly all belly fat).
Any suggestions? She is working on getting to a physician but her current predicament is not so good.
Thanks, just need some help!
I know you have a tough situation in your hands, but from the information you have provided I would strongly suggest for you (and her) to get medical clearance before continuing any further. She might not have any other issues, but you do need that in writing and an acknowledgment/permission to exercise from a physician.
I know that what I am going to say is not what you want to hear: I would not train this client without a physician’s approval. Who knows what you are dealing with: high blood pressure (uncontrolled?), diabetes, hyperlipidemia?
I realize that your heart is in the right place and that you want to help her. But would you want to carry the risk of an exercise-induced emergency?
Do you know what the roadblocks are for her to access medical care? Is it that she does not have transportation, or does not have insurance, or is on a very fixed income, or does not have the experience and education to be able to navigate the system of social nets?
Clearly Harris and Karin are right…. anything you suggest to her now could come back to haunt you if there is any sort of medical issue, and yet, you are right that it is heartbreaking to see someone in need and feel you are not able to do what you clearly see needs doing.
There is always this pull in fitness that those who access the services and are able to pay for them are a much smaller group than those who need them but may have trouble making time for, or paying for those services.
If you can find out from her the answer to my first question you could then see if you could direct her to local or regional social services…. low cost medical clinics, or services that help people figure out insurance options, …. Just being able to get a baseline check up would make it safe for both of you to begin.
I see you have CPR from your Y…. they may have some resources that would help her, as Ys generally work with a lot of people in similar circumstances to this lady. (which is why they often pay less, and why many of us choose to work for them… because the need is so great).