Roy Englert, 91, and four other nonagenarians set world records in three relay events last weekend. Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times. Companion care services are allowing seniors to stay active longer.

Companion Care Services Are Allowing Seniors To Stay Independent Longer

Seniors are doin’ it for themselves! Thanks to options like companion care services, seniors are staying active, independent and engaged in their eighties, nineties, and beyond. Some of them are even making a splash on the national stage in the world of sports, setting records and making celebrities look silly. We bring you three stories of nonagenarians who made news last month in different ways that highlight how seniors are staying vital and taking care of business.

105: Age Or Pitch Speed?

Right here in San Diego, 105-year-old Agnes McKee threw out the first pitch at the July 19th Padres game against the Mets. In stark contrast to recent first-pitch-thrower and rapper 50 Cent, Agnes’ pitch made it to the catcher, if on the bounce. Agnes lives in a retirement home in Oceanside, and stays active with daily exercise, ballroom dancing, and Wii bowling. Take a look at Agnes’ wicked wind-up and pitch here.

The Nonagenarian Track Team

In July, a men’s track and field team comprised entirely of nonagenarians set world records in three relay events at the USA Track and Field Masters Outdoor Championships. Yes, world records! And while the men are the first competitors in their nineties to compete in an official meet, that doesn’t make their achievement any less impressive. Initially, the greatest obstacle was putting together a team whose health and family responsibilities allowed them to compete – and then the goal was to complete each stage in the relays. The men range in age from 91 to 97, and hope to regroup at the indoor nationals in 2015. One of the athletes, Roy Englert, 91, clearly believes ‘age ain’t nuthin’ but number’, because he’s currently training for a 12K run this fall! You can read about Roy, Charles, Orville, Charles and Champion here.

The Weightlifter

And then there’s Shirley Friedman, 90, of New York, who took up strength training when a gym opened up near her apartment in Manhattan a couple of years ago. Along with several other independent seniors living in her apartment complex, Shirley joined Martin Luther Addo’s gym for the beneficial effects on her balance and stamina. But she also enjoys the social atmosphere of the classes and the friends she’s made at the gym. She’s more confident living alone in her apartment, and fears falling less, thanks to working out, senior-style, at the gym. Read about Shirley, her trainer and her friends here, and watch a video of Shirley feeling the burn here.

Oldest Male Super-centenarian Stays At Home With Home Care Aides

And last but not least, Alexander Imich, of New York City, was pronounced “the world’s oldest validated male supercentenarian” by the Gerontology Research Group of Torrance, Calif., at age 111 and 1/4. (A supercentenarian is over the age of 110.) Alexander is a scholar of the occult, and has lived in his West Side apartment since 1986. Despite a recent fall which required a brief hospital stay, Alexander recently hosted friends at his home for a birthday celebration. In his youth, in pre-WWII Poland, he was a talented gymnast and he credits his good genes and athleticism for his longevity.  He became a chemist who survived Nazi invasion of Poland and a Soviet gulag. Never a drinker, he hasn’t smoked in decades and while he was never much of a foodie, his home care aides note that he now loves chocolate and ice cream.

According to a study co-produced by AARP, almost 80% of adults over 65 would prefer to stay in their current residence as long as possible. In addition to home modifications that make allowances for reduced mobility and other issues, the best way to age in place is with the assistance of a private companion and other homecare solutions. Your loved one may not be setting world records, but that doesn’t mean he or she can’t remain independent as long as possible with daily, overnight or 24-hour home care. Even seniors who aren’t making news are working hard to retain their autonomy, and Casa Companion Home Care, one of the premiere companion care services in San Diego, can provide your loved one with the help he or she needs.