The Physical Fitness in the Golden Age program was developed during the Fall of 2005 and began in January, 2006 with 30 participants. The program was developed within the Department of Kinesiology and was assisted by several other UTEP departments, including the Department of Recreational Sports, the Alumni Association and the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects.
The program was funded by a grant from the Paso Del Norte Health Foundation’s Ageless Health Initiative. The overall structure of the program consisted of three weekly training sessions focusing on strength, cardiovascular training, coordination, agility, and balance. Since the start of the program, the number of participants has grown to 150.
The initial 30 participants were trained to be role models of successful aging as Fitness Ambassadors. As Ambassadors, these seniors take on the task of peer mentoring new participants, as well as inviting others in the community to join. The seniors are trained with the help of research assistants, program supervisors, and Kinesiology students from a course titled Fitness Programs and Appraisals.
The program’s initial location was at UTEP’s Swimming & Fitness Center in 2006. Ever since, renovations have been made to the new location, the Ross Moore Fitness Research Facility. Repairs to the building were made possible due to financial support from fundraising with the University and donations from Library Equipment, and Repair and Rehabilitation Funds.