Centers offer options to stay active

Amy Riggins
Contributing writer

Good morning, Shawnee!  Is your birthday in June or July?  We are still getting caught up on our birthday celebrations, so this Tuesday, July 21 we will be recognizing individuals with birthdays in both June and July.  This means we will serve individually wrapped snacks, coffee, iced tea and water all day for anyone who attends.  For those with birthdays in June or July, you can add your name and birthdate to our birthday posters.  Listing your birth year is optional!  

And if you missed out on last week’s celebration, you can still add your name to our posters for April or May.  Moving forward, we will commemorate birthdays by inviting individuals with birthdays that month to sign our poster.  We plan to keep these posters from year to year so we can continue to add names for a long time!  Come celebrate with us!

Are you interested in walking with friends?  Come join a new walking group!  Led by one of our volunteers, this group is for all walking levels and is free for individuals aged 55+.  They meet at 7:45 a.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday in front of the Senior Center and will be walking in the park and/or downtown area.  If you’d rather walk indoors, you can come walk in the auditorium any morning Monday through Friday beginning at 8:00 a.m.

Just a reminder we have lots of opportunities to enjoy Pickleball.  A free Pickleball session meets each Tuesday morning, from 9:00-11:00 a.m. for ages 55+.  All other Pickleball sessions are for all ages with a small cost.  Specific  Pickleball times and offerings are Tuesdays 6:15-8:30 p.m. (Open Round Robin - $3.00), Wednesday and Fridays, 1:00-3:00 p.m. (Open Play - $2.00), Thursdays, 6:15-8:30 p.m. (Paddle Play - $3.00), Saturdays, 9:15-10:00 a.m. (Beginners Play - $3.00), and Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. -1:00 p.m. (Paddle Play with Challenge Court - $3.00).  Monthly and Yearly Pickleball Passes are available for purchase, so let us know if you are interested.

Another way to stay active is to come try a fitness class.  Our fitness classes are free to individuals aged 55+ and are designed to be safe for all fitness levels.  We offer a variety of classes each taught by certified instructors.  Beginners are especially encouraged to come, as the instructor will assist you to adjust the exercises to suit where you are starting out.  

In all our classes, the exercises can be completed standing up or while seated in a chair. Here is a summary of our current fitness class schedule:

Senior Center, 401 N Bell:

Enhance Fitness, Monday-Wednesday-Friday, 8:30-9:30 a.m.  Taught by Beth.  Combination of cardiovascular conditioning, flexibility, strength training, and balance enhancement.  

Tai Chi for Better Balance, Tuesday-Thursday, 8:15-9:15 a.m.  Taught by Cyndi.   8 basic Tai Chi movements designed for balance, core strength, relaxation, and stress reduction.  

Afternoon Fitness, Tuesday-Thursday, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Taught by Angie.  This is a new class, and we are looking people to come join and help us grow!  Angie can teach a variety of class formats, so let us know what you’d like to see in this time slot.  

Community Center, 804 S Park:

Chair Fitness: Stretching, Monday-Wednesday, 10:00-10:45 a.m.  Taught by Angie.  These gentle stretching exercises are designed to help with flexibility, increasing breathing, and circulation.  (Temporary time for the summer)

Chair Fitness: Strength, Tuesday, Thursday, 10:00-10:45 a.m.  Taught by Angie.  A basic exercise program designed for strength and increased circulation.   (Temporary time for the summer)

Our fitness classes are “drop-in,” as you do not need to be enrolled.  For more information about our fitness programs, please contact us at 405-878-1528 or you can email me at

To help keep everyone safe, we are strongly encouraging the use of face masks when individuals are not able to practice social distancing of 6 feet.  You will see our staff members wearing masks at the front counter of the Senior Rec Center, and we do still have a few available if you need one.  One note:  The use of masks is not recommended during fitness classes or while doing physical activity, so we encourage social distancing during the actual class. You can still wear your mask to and from class if you choose to do so.   

We are still recommending social distancing of 6 feet while in the center, plus reminding folks to wash hands often.  Our center operations have transitioned to be mostly touch free, and we are doing our part to keep things clean and disinfected.   We want to encourage you to continue to be safe and do what’s right for you.  Let us know If you have any questions about our cleaning and disinfecting protocols.  

Be safe, stay healthy, and we hope to see you soon at the center!