HOUSTON – If they can do it, what’s your excuse? May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, and it’s a time to spread the word about the benefits of being active! Parkway Place, a faith-based senior living community, is doing that for its residents with a unique sport: chair volleyball.

The game is popular with residents like Aaron Mendoza. The 92-year-old has played for several years and says it’s very competitive. They play every other Wednesday for about an hour, and Mendoza says it’s an outstanding workout and really gets his heart going. The game helps with coordination, stretching and blood flow. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, physical activity can lower the risk of falls and improve cognitive function for seniors because participants learn new activities and improve judgement skills.

Mendoza says his health has improved since he started playing.

“This game is so beneficial,” said Mendoza. “It boosts your morale and your mood. The only way to be healthy is to stay active. That’s why I continue to play. It’s also a lot of fun and provides good fellowship. It is a reason to get together and try something new. It does get intense because everyone wants their team to win, but in the end, it’s a great way for all of us to stay active. Playing this game is one of the best decisions I’ve made here at Parkway Place. This game is easily one of my favorite activities.”

When playing the game, residents split into a red and yellow team with 10 players on each team. The goal is to get the beach ball over the net, but there’s a catch; they have to stay seated during the entire game. Mendoza says sometimes you’ll want to stand up or kick the ball, but you can’t.

Just like a normal volleyball game, the players cover part of the court, rotate positions and serve the ball. He says everyone should play chair volleyball, and National Physical Fitness and Sports Month is the perfect time to start.

“Laughter is the best medicine,” said Mendoza. “We laugh a lot during this game because it’s fun. Every once in a while someone gets hit with the ball, but we all have fun together. I look forward to seeing my team and playing every other week. It’s also nice to see the staff cheering us on while we play. It puts smiles on our faces, and after each game I play I leave in a good mood.”

Mendoza has lived at Parkway Place since 2010 and started playing shortly after his move. The community is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for residents by promoting an active, healthy Christian lifestyle while maintaining their independence and dignity.

“Chair volleyball is one of the most popular activities among residents,” said Rachel Ramirez, wellness director at Parkway Place. “It’s so fun to watch the teams play. You can tell they are really enjoying themselves out on the court, and that’s always a pleasure to see. We encourage residents to stay active, and this game benefits the health and well-being of the residents.”

Great job guys — continue to get those “beach body” workouts in — you are never too old to rock a bikini…  🙂

To find out more about Parkway Place, click here.

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