Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Boomer Organ Recital

Recently we were with a group of Boomer friends many of whom were complaining about aches and pains due to sports and other physical activities. It became a game of can you top my pain.  Fortunately one of the group yelled "Stop. I have had enough of this organ recital."  Rather than get angry the most vocal looked around, got very quiet and smiled sheepishly.  As researchers on Boomers, we asked ourselves what pains are in store for this huge cohort?  Not everyone is going to suffer extreme aches and pains and those that do will suffer in their own way.  However, there is one specific pain causing disease that is targeted to grow to epidemic proportions.  We all know it. It's called Arthritis.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that today there are 50 million cases of arthritis in the U.S. By 2030 they project 67 million cases. But only old people get arthritis, right?  Wrong.  Chances are that as our bodies age we run the risk of becoming an arthritis statistic.  But all is not lost.

We recently saw an article in Arthritis Today magazine about Pearl White, a 96 year old woman, who is a role model for all of us.  A life long dancer, she was forced to give it up at age 80 when her arthritis became too painful for her to continue.  But she rewired and became a fitness instructor.  She didn't give up.  She found another way to channel her energy, continue to exercise, and remain socially engaged as a teacher.  Pearl asked herself, what else can I do?

Life is all about ages and stages.  If something you do becomes problematic, like exercise, playing golf, tennis, dancing, or anything else, you need to find new alternatives that keep you in the game.   Staying physically active and socially engaged is one sure way to have a better future.  It will benefit your body and your mind. So it happens to you, do what Pearl did and find something new!  You can REWIRE as many times as you can imagine or need to.  When one thing goes, try something new.