Jean Bailey, 102, has been a fitness instructor for three years. She’s got the moves and enthusiastically guides others four times a week in seated aerobics. Her future plans? Jean says, “When I get old, I’ll quit.”
Motivate and Move
Jean started the exercise group in her independent living residence when Covid hit and everyone was confined and social distancing. Everyone in the group was younger than Jean, but she put her motivational powers into action and created a group. Jean is known as being a warm, caring person with a fun personality. However, sometimes the members of this all-women group complain that Jean is too tough. Jean’s response? “I want them to do it right and use their muscles.”
The 30 minute classes involve approximately 20 kinds of stretches for both the upper and lower body, including neck rolls, pointing and flexing feet, and bending over to touch the ground – all from a seated position. Jean is careful to make sure that the group moves every part of their body during each class.
Not only has the group created healthy activity, but also close friendships. This community of neighbors is now a community of friends as a result of these weekly classes. Jean, who lives in the independent living wing of a facility offering varying levels of care, keeps busy with daily chores and her hobbies. No stranger to hardship in her early years, Jean became a florist after her children were born and puts those talents to work now bringing joy to others.
Clearly, Jean is an inspiration to everyone around her. At 102, if she can do something – so can the rest of us! Jean credits healthy food and staying active for her healthy longevity. Clearly those were major factors, but so was her positive outlook on life, her volunteering, the many relationships she’s made and continues to make – all key components of a 100 Year Lifestyle. Those early hardships also made her resilient. Born during the Great Depression, she still had a very unique and difficult start in the world. Curious? Keep reading.