Fight Back against Parkinson’s Disease


Fight Back against Parkinson’s Disease




Have you ever tried buttoning up your shirt with gloves on? How about handwriting a letter in a moving car? What if you tried walking around during the day with shoe laces that will suddenly tie themselves together? What I’ve just described is what over a million Americans with Parkinson’s experience everyday of their life.


This condition has a way of chipping away at the seemingly simple things we do on a daily bases, first, by physically altering the way a person moves their limbs, walks and eventually stands up. But, social isolation, depression, and cognitive decline can also slowly take their life away.


The good news for you or that person you know with Parkinson’s is that we have found a way to FIGHT BACK! A way to stand up to Parkinson’s and live a good, full life, with hope and dignity! It is called Rock Steady Boxing, a nationally recognized and global movement to combat this progressive, degenerative neurological disorder.


Rock Steady Boxing at Bonita Bay will offer a challenging workout that is fun and appropriate for this group. Boxing seeks to improve the very elements Parkinson’s disease takes away, agility, speed, muscular endurance, accuracy, balance, hand-eye coordination, footwork and overall strength. Each facet is trained under the supervision of caring professionals in a group setting with other folks going through the same thing together. One of the greatest benefits of this program is the social interaction between the members as they share similar struggles and fight the same battle. The exercises bring in traditional boxing style moves while adjusting for each person’s fitness level. Before you go out and buy a mouth guard though, these are non-contact exercises so no one gets hurt but everyone gets a great workout!


Men and women, young and old, newly diagnosed and those living with it for decades… each and every person affected by Parkinson’s as well as their loved ones and caregivers should attend the lecture on December 12th at 11:15am . Dr. Amanda Avila, a Neurologist and Movement Disorder Specialist and the Medical Director for Hope Parkinson’s program in Fort Myers will give an overview of the disease including symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options and the latest research. We will also hear from Dr. Heather Ault and Naturopath Teresa Spano from Integrative Medicine on the nutritional approach for managing Parkinson’s. Finally, we will preview the details of our upcoming programs for those with Parkinson’s including Rock Steady Boxing.


Please call to pre-register for this event.  



Get Moving!

Ever heard of Newton’s law… a body at rest stays at rest and a body in motion stays in motion?  This is especially true of the human body.  Humans were made to MOVE!

Think about it, you wake up in the morning and you are stiff and sore but once you start moving around, you feel so much better.  Likewise, when you sit for too long, your back, your neck, and your shoulders start to ache.  Now there are times after a significant injury or surgery that you must rest, but otherwise, getting up and moving around is good for you- even if you are in pain and you don’t really feel like it… especially if you don’t feel like it!

Resting may feel good temporarily, but the long-term effects of inactivity will take their toll.  A sedentary lifestyle may lead to obesity which in turn will increase the stress on your joints like your spine, hips, and knees.  Some may experience depression which often associated with chronic pain and fatigue.  In addition, a sedentary lifestyle puts you at an increased risk for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.

The bottom line is that movement is good!  According to Stanford senior research scientist, Bonnie Bruce, DRPH, MPH, RD, those who exercise regularly have 25% less musculoskeletal pain that their couch-bound peers).  In a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill study, arthritis sufferers experienced 25% less pain and 16% less stiffness after 6 months of low-impact exercise like balance and strengthening moves (

The key is finding something that you enjoy doing.  Maybe that’s going for a walk, maybe that’s riding your bike, or maybe that’s taking a group fitness class.  Here are some suggestions:

lets-dance5,6,7,8 Let’s Dance.  This is a low impact class in which our instructor will lead you through some easy-to-follow dance steps.  You will learn old favorites in addition to some of the latest line dances.  Class incorporates a variety of music styles like the Oldies, Rock, Pop, Country, Latin, and R&B.  You don’t need any experience and you don’t need a partner.  5,6,7,8 Let’s Dance is offered on Mondays at 8:00 a.m.

Those who suffer from arthritis often do well with pool exercises.  Many people enjoy water aerobics because the instructor can guide you through the exercises and you have the company of others to make exercising more enjoyable.  We offer water aerobics on Mondays, Wednesdays, & Fridays at 10:15 a.m.

Believe it or not, spin is a good option for those with arthritis.  It is a non-weight bearing workout that can be as tough or as easy as you want/ need it to be.   The instructor is there to motivate you and guide you, but you are in control of the resistance and whether you sit or stand during the class!  Spin is offered on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at 9:00 a.m. and on Wednesdays at 3:00 p.m.


Don’t Use the Season as a Reason to Splurge


Don’t Use the Season as a Reason to Splurge


Remember they call it a holi-DAY, not a holi-WEEK. It’s ok to indulge a little during the holidays, but stay focused on your long-term goals. And, make sure what you are splurging on is worth it… think of it like this, those holiday desserts and cocktails, those second helping or other food temptations are “akin to a tattoo: you’d better like it because it will be a part of your from now on!” –Robert S Wieder for Calorie Lab Counter News.


Try some of these simple swaps from MyFitnessPal for a thinner Thanksgiving

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Final thought:

Instead of focusing on food this holiday season, focus on family and the things that you are most grateful for. Read below to see what your Fitness Staff is giving thanks for this holiday season.

“I am thankful for my Florida family and friends who help to make Florida feel like home.” – Erica Hemmer

“I am thankful to have wonderful people by my side in the present and to know that they will be a part of my future.”- Mallory Yerkovich

“I am thankful for my amazing family and friends, for good health, weekends, sunshine, my new puppy, and work friends. Life is what you make it!”- Kristen Ramirez

“I am thankful for my family and for my momma’s cookin!”- Lucio Ojeda

“I am grateful for so many things in my life… my family, my good friends, for my health and the health of those that I care about. I am grateful to have a job that I love coming to everyday (for so many reasons) and for a good sense of humor.”- Tammy Mugavero


And here’s what our members are thankful for:


“I am thankful to wake up every day, and to be able to enjoy my time at the fitness center.”- George Longtin

“I am thankful for my wife, my children, my grandchildren, and for living in Bonita Bay.”- Doug Loth

“I am very thankful that my daughter is moving closer and that I am healthy and able to exercise.”- Lee Driscoll



Pilates is Like Happy Hour for Your Body

By Elaine Entenza, Certified Pilates Instructor & ACSM Health & Fitness Specialist

Pilates is a conditioning program designed to align your spine and strengthen your core. As a result, it is a very effective exercise option for everyone, especially those looking to relieve chronic back pain. Here’s how it works and why you should give it a try.

Pilates is one of the best methods for core strengthening because the exercises are designed to strengthen the body’s stabilizing muscles; smaller muscles that closely line the joints and play an important role in both initiating movement and stabilizing joints. And these smaller muscles can often be overlooked in a typical gym workout. I like to use the house analogy with my clients; what good is a highly decorated home if the foundation is weak? The same is true for your body. Strong bis and tris and quads may look nice, but if your core musculature is weak, the external looking “strength” more closely resembles a façade, and the lack of foundational strength can set the body up for long term muscular imbalances.

Pilates is also a two for one deal; every exercise you practice works on lengthening AND strengthening your muscles at the same time. It’s like a happy hour for your body! Balance is achieved because we move through full ranges of motion while under tension, controlling both the lengthening phase and eccentric return. The result is strong AND flexible muscles that create equal tension across joints, which increases stability and lessens the risk of injury along the spine and other joints.

These benefits carry on outside of the gym and into your every day life and daily activities. Strong, stable, pain-free bodies are the pinnacle of happy living! So why not step outside the gym box and into the studio to try something new? The only things you have to lose are joint pain, poor posture and maybe a few strokes off your handicap.

pilates4-wellness-dayNote:   Pilates is therapeutic and rehabilitative for CHRONIC CONDITIONS ONLY. Acute injuries such as slipped discs, torn meniscus,etc – ie injuries caused from accident or immediate trauma need to recover past inflammation stage before starting or returning to a Pilates regime.

Exercise is Powerful Medicine

Exercise is Powerful Medicine


By: Tammy Mugavero MS, L/ATC, CSCS, TPI Level 2 Medical Certified


            Regular exercise is one of the best things you can do for your health. The benefits are well documented and include a reduced risk for heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis. Exercise also helps to control stress, boosts mood, improves sleep, decreases the risk of falling, and improves cognitive function in older adults. Research even shows that exercise helps you live longer (and better), but how much is enough? And, how hard do you have to work to get some (or all) of the benefits?

Well, let me start by saying that any and all movement is good, but exercise must challenge you. Exercise is work, and it should never be “easy.” The industry’s recommendations for time, intensity, and frequency vary a little depending on your goals, but most agree that a general goal for physical activity is 30 minutes per day on most days of the week, or 150 minutes of physical activity per week including both strength and cardio-vascular exercise. However, there is some research that suggests that you can get similar benefits in short intense bouts of “all-out” interval training as you get in a typical 45-50 minute session of moderate intensity exercise.

Here is the bottom line as I see it—anything is better than nothing when it comes to physical activity but most experts agree that more is better. Now, I am not suggesting that we have to become a slave to the gym but I am saying that exercise is as important (and less expensive) for your overall health as the pills that you take to control your blood-glucose levels, or your medication to control your high blood pressure. I am saying that those who live sedentary lives have a 6x’s greater chance of dying from heart disease over the course of 15 years. I am saying that what you do outside of the gym is as important as what you do in the gym. You can’t work out really hard for an hour and then spend the rest of your waking day in front of the TV or computer. And lastly, I am saying that it’s never too late to benefit from an exercise program.

After all, we don’t just want to live longer; we also want to live better, and there’s no denying that exercise goes a long way in letting us do that.

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Final thought: There is some research that shows that exercise slows the aging process at the cellular level by increasing the levels of a molecule that protects the “end caps” of our chromosomes (Time Magazine. Sept. 1, 2016. “7 Surprising Benefits of Exercise”).


It’s a man’s world (or it can be)… Pilates

by Pamela Arevalo, Certified Pilates Instructor

It can be hard to be a man in today’s fitness world. Many people think that group classes, especially Pilates and Yoga are only for women- that they aren’t manly.  I feel for you, I really do. You sit for long hours at your desk looking at your computer, you sit in your recliner watching the game… you are so focused, so entertained that you can’t hear your spine yelling at you and begging you to correct your posture! Yes, YOU, YOU, YOU… You can feel the back pain, you know your muscles are getting stiff, but stepping into a group class for stretching is intimidating—especially with so many of the group classes being dominated by women.   So you just sit back and sigh and your muscles get tighter and tighter and your back pain gets worse and worse.

Well, smile! A man just like you, Joseph Hubertus Pilates, many years ago thought about you. Smile more! Your club thought about you and has a fully equipped Pilates studio with top notch equipment to help you improve flexibility and posture. We offer small group training and one-on-one sessions, and yes, it’s waiting for YOU!

In today’s health and wellness world there is no need for you to have tight hamstrings and hip flexors, or shoulder and neck stiffness, a flat back or rounded shoulders. It’s not fair to deprive yourself from enjoying life without pain, and Pilates offers the possibility to become more flexible, to develop core strength, to improve your game. The possibilities are endless! So breathe and relax because Pilates could be your answer… and don’t worry, not ballerina moves for you.

We know you love facts so here you go:

  • Pilates is a mindful and comprehensive way of exercising the body. It provides you with unique and effective ways to increase flexibility in tight areas such as the hamstrings, lower back, and shoulders by lengthening the muscles against resistance. Pilates equipment is a unique tool: it allows for eccentric muscle contractions—muscle lengthening as it resists a force—key for improving flexibility and for achieving long and strong muscles.
  • Pilates focuses on recruiting, engaging, aligning, and strengthening the core muscles (the trunk, shoulder girdles, and pelvis) as well as local global body stabilizers. Pilates knows and addresses the pain that can come from and inactive gluteus that tightens the hip flexors.
  • Pilates reeducates the body, teaching it how to be mindful while in movement. It gives powerful insights on how to integrate the pelvis, trunk, and shoulder girdle in a harmonious, yet powerful way.
  • Pilates accommodates for full range of motion, hence it allows you to perform slow, controlled and flowing movements that will target specific muscle groups necessary to stabilize the body.
  • Pilates will improve coordination, balance, bone density, spine articulation, breathing patterns, and functional movement.
  • Pilates leads to better posture, efficient movement, decreased risk of injury, increased range of motion, increased athletic performance, effective post-rehabilitation, longer and leaner muscles, and for many, relief from pain associated with physical imbalances such as low back pain, scoliosis, tight hip flexors, and pain related to shoulder injuries.


The Beginner’s Guide
By Jaimie Peacock, Group Fitness Instructor

Are you an avid runner, walker, or just want to try something new? A cycling class is a great way to mix it up and challenge your body in a different way! Cycling burns calories quickly, provides a safe ride in the comfort of the indoors, and is super fun!

All you need to get started is comfortable workout clothes, and sneakers. Some people wear padded biking shorts and cycling shoes, but they are not necessary to get started. Also bring plenty of water to stay hydrated. Our bikes have heart monitors so that you can track your progress during class.

The instructor guides your workout and the high-energy music keeps you motivated. The pace and speed varies throughout the workout, sometimes you work with high-speed and low resistance and other times you pedal at low-speed and heavy resistance. Sometimes you are in the seat and sometimes you move to a standing position on the bike. Don’t worry, the instructor will offer alternatives so you can adjust your intensity according to your fitness level.

If you are intimidated, don’t be! I have been teaching for 15 years, and Spinning is just like riding outside. No one knows how much tension you put on your flywheel so start out easy and dial it up if you are feeling great. Dial it down if you feel like you need a break. I always tell people, “you are in charge. I am here to motivate you, but you do the work.”

Hopping on an indoor bike gives you the opportunity to use different muscles, to do some cross training and to burn calories faster. So what are you waiting for, get pedaling!

Beginning October 24, Spin will be offered on Mondays, Tuesdays, & Thursdays at 9:00 a.m, on Wednesdays at 3:00 p.m, and on Saturdays at 9:00 a.m.

Click on the video below to learn how to pair the heart rate monitors and to adjust the bike to fit you!


Exercise 101: Tips for Getting Started and Staying Motivated

by Lucio Ojeda, ACSM Certified Health and Fitness Specialist

lucio-ojedaWant to start working out but don’t know what to do?  Afraid of hurting yourself in the gym?  Looking for ideas to help you maximize you workouts or to help you stay motivated?  Here are a few tips that I find helpful in maximizing your success in the gym:

1. Set realistic goals:  It is important for our goals to be achievable so that we can gradually raise the bar.  Start small and build momentum.

2. Avoid the all or nothing attitude:  research has shown that benefits occur with 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week.  This breaks down to only 30 minutes, 5 times/ week.  Something is always better than nothing.  Moderate intensity is characterized by slightly harder breathing than normal.  If you cannot carry on a conversation through exercise, then you may be working too hard.

3. The rule of moderation:  When making changes to your diet, it is important to start by making small changes… replace high calorie, sugary drinks with water or zero calorie drinks.  Replace crackers and chips with a healthier snack.  Little by little (meal by meal and snack by snack), you will develop healthier eating habits.

4. Reward yourself:  It can be as simple as having a small portion of your favorite “cheat meal” or even better, treat yourself to a relaxing massage.

5. Prepare for the workout:  It is proven that if you pack a bag for the following day, you will be more likely to follow through with your exercise.

6. Find alternative activities to the gym:  Hiking, biking, golf, tennis, group fitness, roller blading, and paddle boarding are good alternatives to your normal workouts in the gym.

7. Invite others:  You will be more likely to participate in exercise with a friend or a family member.

REST:  This is one of the most important aspects to stay efficient and focused when exercising.  When you exercise, you are essentially breaking down muscle.  Many of the gains come as a result of what you do when you are not at the gym.  Our bodies need proper rest and fuel to repair the muscle that was broken down during exercise, and you will also need the energy to maintain a consistent routine.

I hope that these tips will be helpful, and I wish you the best on your journey to better health!  If you find that you need more help getting started, attend one of our daily equipment orientations at 10:00 a.m. M-F for a brief overview of the equipment or to get a more customized plan, you can book a session with me or one of our other Personal Trainers.

Hope to see you at the Fitness Center!

*Lucio is an ACSM Certified Health and Fitness Specialist and a graduate of FGCU.  Before coming to Bonita Bay, he worked as a Strength & Conditioning Coach alongside the Florida Everblades and as a Wellness Specialist for Naples Community Hospital. 


World of Pilates!

Welcome to the World of Pilates!  Pilates delivers profound results and will gently help align, strengthen, stabilize, and stretch your body.  Although Pilates doesn’t revolve around a one-size fits all formula, I want to share with you what I feel are the essentials or five basic principles of Stott Pilates.  Click on the video below to learn and practice these exercises.

Stott Pilates is a more contemporary approach to Pilates.  It incorporates the fundamentals of Joseph Pilates’ original teachings with what we have learned throughout the years. 

Pamela is certified in Stott Pilates and teaches Thursday’s Pain Free Posture Class.  Beginning the week of October 24, she will also teach Barre on Mondays at 10:00 a.m., and an Essentials/ Beginner level Reformer Class on Fridays at 9:00 a.m. and on Saturdays at 10:00 a.m. In addition, she will begin teaching Pain Free Posture on Saturdays at 9:00 a.m.  Pamela is also available for one-one-one Reformer sessions by appointment.

The Classic Lottery


1 Ron Davids
2 Anthony Vuoto
3 Keith Hynes
4 Nate Peck
5 Jeff Baker
6 Dick Cregar
7 Al Nicholson
8 Tom Claffey
9 Larry Kellam
10 Chris Cummings
11 Art Helgerson
12 Bushar Succar
13 Brad Seger
14 Russ Smith
15 Bruce Milligan
16 Joseph Binns
17 Jim Good
18 Randy Jones
19 Ray Hedding
20 Leif Nesheim
21 Louis Lataif
22 Richard Stanis
23 Pete Saputo
24 Barney Bauermeister
25 William Steere
26 Dick Etches
27 Larry Maddox
28 Tim Dove
29 Richard White
30 Brian Grant
31 Bill Schieffer
32 Steve Duffield
33 Dan Star
34 Ray Lenhardt
35 John DeMaria
36 Steve Swigart
37 Tom Kemp
38 Tim O’Reilly
39 David Wilson
40 Duke Downey
41 Stephen Pollock
42 Dewitt Ezell
43 Peter Jones
44 Roger Nolan
45 Dan Adams
46 Kevin Ferraro
47 Bob Webbert
48 Matt Wineinger
49 Bill Setterstrom
50 Bob Hoehn
51 Jim Brescoll
52 Richard Johnson
53 Willis Blackwood
54 Jim Oberweis
55 Bill Cadigan
56 Chris Edwards
57 Larry Andrews
58 Max Lummis
59 Mac Godby
60 Jim Preston
61 Robert Spitzer
62 Bill Kranec
63 Randy Grow
64 Phill Ashkettle
65 Ron Tachuk
66 Alan Pyott
67 Dick Tieva
68 Frank Mergenthaler
69 Olaf Johansen
70 Ron Creten
71 Bill Clegg
72 Craig Hopple
73 David Vander Kam
74 Dan Gilbert
75 Mark Kinard
76 David Murphy
77 Ray Kedzior
78 Laynglyn Capers
79 Bill McSkimming
80 Tom Boyle
81 Terry Gallagher
82 Chuck Tambornino
83 Greg Shepard
84 Dick Miller
85 Brad Wind
86 Mike Harris
87 Jake Barker
88 Steve Klein
89 Lee Baumann
90 Mike Zandlo
91 Larry Pickering
92 Gary Brooks
93 Richard Neville
94 Jay Henderson
95 Keith Greuling
96 David Dutro
97 Brad Alspaugh
98 Charlie Mong
99 Dennis Meteny
100 Ted Carnevale
101 Mike Struna
102 David Verner
103 Gary Lashley
104 Brad Peete
105 Dennis Wilkie
106 Randy McDevitt
107 Leo Hansen
108 Bill Griffith
109 Marty Klagholz
110 Lynn Wolgast
111 George Lucke
112 Jack Carey
113 Louis Sfreddo
114 Walt Douglas
115 Josh Nagin
116 Richard Dell
117 Jeff Guttenberger
118 Stephen Bransfield
119 Len Nuzzo
120 Dennis Finnigan
121 Bob Biggs
122 Steve Kneeley
123 Dick Bailey
124 David Whitman
125 Chuck Campbell
126 John Register
127 Steve Lee
128 Randy Seger
129 Bob Barnes
130 Ray Sutherland
131 Tom Iversen
132 Eric Bumstead
133 Terry Mulligan
134 Buddy Micelle
135 Frank Hake
136 Mike Hartley
137 Gary Pottruff
138 Mike Wiley
139 Chuck York
140 Dave Barry
141 Paul Muehr
142 Vic DeMarines
143 David McMahon


1 Jim Horein
2 Jay Johnston
3 Frank Genovese
4 Doug Hoogerhyde
5 William Jennings
6 Tom Waterman
7 David Treadwell
8 David Guidabaldi
9 Bob Ott
10 Bob Titmas
11 Bob Heyne
12 Peter Janson
13 Kim Shearburn
14 Steve Pino
15 Don Young
16 Peter Waite
17 Mike Collins
18 Mark Clark
19 David Kingland
20 Don Fochtman
21 Ed Novak
22 David Klein
23 Joe Joachim
24 Ed Caffrey