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Move to the Beat: Drums Alive Program Comes to Pennswood Village

Posted on April 4, 2019 in Community Highlight, General

Drums Alive, a unique music-based exercise program, has come to Pennswood Village! The program has gained popularity around the world because it’s not only fun and energetic, but also has a long list of potential health benefits for both the body and mind. During the program, each participant has a stability ball, a riser to hold the ball and a set of drumsticks. The instructor teaches a few moves, then the music starts playing. For the next 45 minutes, participants drum along together, dancing and enjoying the collective sounds!

Since coming to Pennswood Village in November of 2018, Drums Alive has gained popularity among residents, too. The classes are held almost every week and are open to residents of all abilities. Some residents choose to stand while they play, while other residents choose to sit. With a class size of 14, each session fills up fast, and there’s always a wait list to join. A certified Drums Alive instructor teaches the sessions, and all equipment is provided to the participants.

The program has an emphasis on physical wellness, but also addresses many other aspects of wellness. The social setting and musical aspect add a layer of enjoyment to the primarily cardio exercise. Cardio exercises are great for increasing heart rate and improving blood circulation, and the musical element improves brain function and emotional health.

“There’s definitely a cardio benefit and a brain benefit due to the dual tasking,” said Becky Popik, Pennswood Village Wellness Director, “similar to dance or tai chi. The social aspect is also important. Residents have fun together, and it can be a joyful experience.”

Brain and body benefits

Drums Alive is a whole body workout, which can help improve right brain and left brain coordination. Because participants are using both their left and right arms in a rhythmic pattern, they’re strengthening coordination and synchronization between the two hemispheres of the brain, and growing brain function in areas that aren’t typically engaged. Synchronized brain wave activity has been shown to improve concentration, reverse stress responses, improve sensory and motor movement, and produce feelings of elation and creativity.

Drumming has also historically been viewed as a means for emotional expression. Whether you’re having a good day or a bad day, drumming can be a way to express those feelings in a supportive group environment. Emotional expression is an important part of any person’s wellness.

The health benefits of Drums Alive has been researched by a number of universities, including the University of Chemnitz, Germany, Texas State University, Southern Connecticut State University, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, University of Kentucky and Oxford Brookes University.

Wellness at Pennswood

Drums Alive is just one of the many wellness programs available at Pennswood. A number of wellness opportunities are available each day, both on and off campus, including exercise classes, art classes, lectures, trips, social groups and more.

Exercise classes are held both on land and in the water, including tai chi, yoga, water volleyball, personal training and many others. For those who like to be active outdoors, Pennswood features community gardens, walking paths, a putting green, a bocce ball court and a croquet court.

Pennswood also provides opportunities for emotional, social, intellectual and occupational wellness. Residents can attend a lecture, watch a movie screening, visit the library, meet friends in the dining room, volunteer for a cause and so much more. Regardless of your interests, there are always opportunities to maintain and improve your wellness!

For more information on wellness programs at Pennswood Village, give us a call at 215-504-1118, or visit us online to request a free information kit and Life Care guide. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have!