PROMOTING ACTIVE LIVING FOR SENIORS
Working with public housing residents to improve walkability and promote falls prevention programming and fitness equipment use
Why Active Living for Seniors?
- Older adults who stay physically active have better physical and mental health and are more likely to be able to live independently.
- Being active also helps seniors get out of their homes and maintain their social connections. Preventing loneliness and isolation is important to staying healthy.
The Health Department is partnering with the Minneapolis Highrise Representative Council (MHRC) to improve active living for seniors living in Minneapolis Public Housing Authority highrises. Together we are engaging seniors living in 10 highrises to make it easier to walk around the highrises, use fitness equipment in the buildings, and access falls prevention classes. An advisory committee is helping lead these efforts and is made up of highrise residents, MHRC staff, Health Department staff, Public Works staff, Volunteers of America social workers, and Allina Health staff.
For more information, contact:
- Charles Horn Towers, 3110 Blaisdell Ave
- Hiawatha Towers, 2121 16th Ave S
- Hamilton Manor, 1314 44th Ave N
- The Riverside, 2728 E Franklin Ave
- Park Center, 1515 Park Ave
- Lyndale Manor, 600 18th Ave N
- Cedar High Apartments, 1627 S 6th St
- Parker Skyview, 1815 Central Ave NE
- Heritage Commons at Pond's Edge, 350 Van White Memorial Blvd
- Spring Manor, 828 Spring St NE
- An advisory committee has been established
- MHRC and the Health Department held listening sessions in 10 buildings to learn more about residents' barriers to walking and using fitness equipment, as well as their interest in falls prevention classes. We are also in the process of holding walking audits near each building to better document problem areas for walking. We found that:
- The biggest barriers to walking are poorly cleared snow and ice in the winter, uneven pavement, fast traffic (especially at intersections), and concerns about personal safety.
- Residents are very interested in using fitness equipment in their buildings. Barriers to fitness equipment use include no space for equipment and equipment that is old or broken down. Residents also need help using the equipment.
- Residents are very interested in attending falls prevention programming.
- After the walking audits are complete, the Health Department will work with MHRC and with residents to:
- Talk with the appropriate agencies about addressing concerns about the walking environment near highrise buildings
- Explore creating a system for purchasing and maintaining fitness equipment in buildings and work with Allina to provide volunteers who can train residents on using fitness equipment
- Work with community partners to get falls prevention programming in buildings
- As a result of their participation in this project, several buildings have started their own walking clubs, where residents meet up once or twice a week to walk together.
For many seniors, it is important that sidewalks are clear and free of tripping hazards. Make sure your neighborhood streets are friendly for seniors:
- Ensure your sidewalks are in good repair and free of snow, brush, and other tripping hazards
- Call 311 to report unsafe walking conditions, such as uneven sidewalks or sidewalks that are not clear of snow or ice
Last updated Feb 2, 2015