New York City Department for the Aging

05/31/2023 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 05/31/2023 14:38

Department for the Aging, NYC Parks, Mayor’s Office of Sports, Wellness and Recreation, Celebrate 30th Anniversary of National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day with Pickleball[...]

Department for the Aging, NYC Parks, Mayor's Office of Sports, Wellness and Recreation, Celebrate 30th Anniversary of National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day with Pickleball at Wollman Rink

**For Immediate Release**

New York, NY - In recognition of the 30th Anniversary of National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day, Mayor Eric Adams and Department for the Aging Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez hosted more than 200 older New Yorkers at Wollman Rink to play pickleball and participate in other wellness activities. Joining the event was also NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue and Mayor's Office of Sports, Wellness and Recreation Director Jasmine Ray.

"Older adults are not only the leaders of our families and beacons of wisdom in our communities, but they are the heart and soul of our city. We owe them everything," said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. "That's why our administration is working every day on behalf of older New Yorkers. Through the Cabinet for Older New Yorkers, we are combatting ageism, helping older New Yorkers afford to stay in their communities, and informing our front-line health care workers about the programs and services the Department of Aging and other agencies offer, so that patients can receive the all-around care they deserve. We are building an age-inclusive city, and today, as we celebrate the 30th Anniversary of National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day, we want to remind our older adults that everybody is capable of living a healthy life."

National Older Adult Health and Fitness Day was created to promote the importance of regular physical activity. Local organizations throughout the country participate by hosting events that allow residents to exercise together, as a community.

"Our physical health is key to our overall wellbeing. Games like pickleball are social, so while we are getting a sweat in, we are also encouraging our friends and neighbors to join in on the fun," said NYC Aging Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez. "There are plenty of ways older New Yorkers can stay fit. Find the best way for you, in your own community, by looking at what our older adult centers offer throughout the city."

CityPickle, the organization that operates the pickleball courts at Wollman Rink, supported all the activities taking place, and Lenox Hill Hospital Northwell Health sponsored today's event by providing lunch, offering stretching activities, blood pressure checks and other health-related activities.

To show other ways of staying active, NYC Aging also provided dance activities and a board game to play called Age-Tastic, giving attendees the opportunity to exercise their minds.

"Pickleball is a fun, fast-paced sport that's easy to pick up and accessible for players of all ages and abilities, and I'm so happy to see older adults taking advantage of CityPickle's courts at Wollman Rink," said NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue. "We're happy to offer recreational programs to all New Yorkers in our parks and recreation centers, and I hope today inspires everyone to get out and join the fun!"

"Aging is an inevitable part of life which should be enjoyed and celebrated by all," said Office of Sports, Wellness and Recreation Director Jasmine Ray. "Whether you started engaging in physical activity at a young age or decided to pick up a new sport as an older adult, there is strong evidence that proves an active lifestyle has tremendous benefits. Competition also helps the spirit to stay young! I am so grateful to all involved who made this day possible and hope that we continue to foster new opportunities to play!"

"Staying active and eating well are essential to a healthy life, no matter a person's age," said Daniel Baker, MD, Executive Director of Lenox Hill Hospital. "Northwell is proud to be part of this exciting event to promote both fitness and community in the city. This is a great opportunity to exercise and stay connected with our neighbors - things we no longer take for granted in a post-pandemic world."

"CityPickle was founded with a mission to show more people the benefits of playing pickleball, and on National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day, we're proud to work with Mayor Eric Adams, NYC Aging, NYC Parks, and community leaders to promote healthy lifestyles among New Yorkers" said Co-Founders of CityPickle Mary Cannon and Erica Desai. "Today's event brought together many people who hadn't played pickleball before, and we hope to see them on the courts again soon."

"Staying active is essential for keeping older New Yorkers healthy and engaged, which is why I'm pleased the City is raising awareness by celebrating National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day," said Congressman Jerrold Nadler. "I look forward to seeing New Yorkers from all walks of life gather together to take advantage of this event and all Wollman Rink has to offer."

"Physical activity is important for everyone, including older adults, so it's great we are encouraging older adults to take advantage of the city's many amazing opportunities to be active" said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. "Queens is home to a wide variety of activities that promote wellness and are lots of fun. I encourage all of our residents to find the activity that's right for them and to have a great time while promoting good health."

"I am thrilled to join Mayor Adams, Commissioner Cortés-Vázquez, Commissioner Donoghue, and Director Ray in celebrating the 30th Anniversary of National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day. This event is a testament to our commitment to promoting the well-being of older New Yorkers and highlighting the importance of regular physical activity" said Council MemberKamillah M. Hanks. "By engaging in activities like pickleball, stretching, dancing, and playing board games, we are not only keeping our bodies active but also nurturing our minds and fostering a sense of community."

"As we celebrate the 30th anniversary of National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day, we honor the commitment of older adults to staying active and healthy. This is an exciting way to stay fit through the fun and exhilarating game of Pickleball, which has become popular among seniors, especially in my community," said Council Member Marjorie Velázquez. "It's inspiring to see our seniors experience a boost in their physical, mental, and social wellness. Here's to many more years of staying active and fit through Pickleball and other fun activities!"

"National Older Adult Health & Fitness Day is essential to the mental and physical wellbeing of our older adults. Creating spaces where people can remain engaged, social, and physically fit is the best way to keep our communities and the foundations of our families heathy" Council Member Amanda Farias. "We need as many opportunities to support good health and wellness, and combat isolation for our older adults. I applaud Mayor Adams, Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez, Commissioner Sue Donoghue, and Director of Mayor's Office of Sports, Wellness and Recreation Jasmine Ray for creating this celebration of community today for our older adults."

*NYC Older Adult Health & Fitness Day

is a participating event of National Senior Health & Fitness Day, the nation's largest annual older adult health & fitness event.