Last updated: July 17. 2013 3:31PM - 160 Views

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Julia Roberts Goad

Staff Writer

WILLIAMSON - The pain of arthritis is often seen as an inevitable part of growing older, but the Arthritis Foundation research finds that exercise can alleviated by exercise.

Center for Disease Control director Thomas R. Frieden, MD, called exercise “a wonder drug.”

“We’re excited that people with arthritis are walking more,” says Patience White, MD, the Arthritis Foundation’s vice president for public health. “But we really now need to focus on people with arthritis to bring them up to the national average or better.”

The Arthritis Foundation Walk with Ease Program is a community-based physical activity and self-management education program. The Mingo County Diabetes Coalition (MCDC) is sponsoring these free exercise programs in local communities as a way to increase physical activity and prevent chronic disease.

Vicki Hatfield, Certified Diabetes Instructor with the MCDC said the program will meet three times a week for six weeks.

The program is set up in groups led by trained leaders as a structured six-week program.

While walking is the central activity, Walk with Ease is a multi-component program that also includes health education, stretching and strengthening exercises, and motivational strategies. Group sessions include socialization time, pre-walk informational mini- lectures, warm up and cool downs and a 10-35 minute walking period.

“Seniors often have no access to exercise facilities, and limited social activities,” Hatfield said.

“And when they have exercise, they don’t want to move because they think it will cause them to hurt. But the more they move, the better mobility they will have.”

Studies by the Thurston Arthritis Research Center and the Institute on Aging of the University of North Carolina show that Walk With Ease is proven to reduce the pain and discomfort of arthritis, increase balance, strength and walking pace build confidence in your ability to be physically active and improve Improve overall health.

Classes will be held in Williamson, Matewan, Delbarton, Lenore, Belo, Gilbert and Delbarton. Classes are free and participants will receive a free workbook and other materials.

Participants may contact Patricia Bostic, program coordinator, at (304)235-3006 for

registration information. The programs in Williamson, Delbarton, Matewan and Gilbert will be held at the local Senior Citizens Centers. Lenore’s program will be held at the Victory Christian Center and the Belo program will be held at the Little Dove Baptist

A Kickoff meeting will be held for the Lenore and Belo classes on August 27th, 2012 at Little Dove Baptist Church. Those interested in attending classes at either location are encouraged to attend to register for the class.

The programs will start the week of September 10, 2012.

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