Loneliness can strike without warning, and older women are especially susceptible. Women who have raised a family, and who have focused purely on their home, children and spouse, often find themselves isolated and depressed when the need for them changes. Because of the enormous gap that appears once the children leave home, and the possible added pain of losing a spouse, women can find themselves completely alone, often with no real friends to turn to.
This well of loneliness, can leave the once needed and married woman, feeling vulnerable and alone, and unable to function as before. "Individuals who live in isolation are more likely to be depressed, may be more likely to suffer from malnutrition, and are separated from opportunities for socialization," says Dr. Ronan Factora, specialist in geriatrics at the Cleveland Clinic.
Community involvement can do much to alleviate loneliness. Whether it be joining a club, volunteering, taking classes, or joining a gym, getting involved in the community helps greatly.
One of the places that many local women have found solace is Kirkland/Houghton Curves Gym For Women. This all female, nurturing, and friendly club, has helped in the bringing together of middle and older age women, in a supportive and caring atmosphere.
Many older women struggle to overcome debilitating loneliness, and need a new niche in life; which is why a friendly, women only gym like Curves, can make all the difference. "Not only do the ladies find like-minded friends and build relationships, they also get a great workout, that is flexible and fun, and perfect for keeping their bodies healthy and strong," says Karen, Circuit Coach at Kirkland Curves. "The women that come here vary in age, we have many who are over sixty and who want to keep healthy in mind and body. Our job is to nurture that need."
" 1985 seems so long ago, when we started walking at 6.am," says long time member Marilyn. "Through the years we have shared our children's graduation, marriages, and the arrival of grandchildren. In 2003 I expanded my workout to include Curves. Working out at the same time every day in the circular circuit, allows for conversations and friendships to develop with others."
" I'm thrilled that I came to Curves. I have made a special 'Curves friend,' and I look forward to coming here every week," says Mary, member since 2005. "My kids went to school, my husband has his job, I needed something, this really helped."
"Since being here, and I've been here a long time," says Kate, long time Curves member. "I've noticed a difference in my ability to move. I can turn around in the car now, and getting out of the car is much easier. The staff are very good and I've made some special friends. I love the fact that I can wear whatever I feel Comfortable in, and it's all women."
" It's been a wonderful way to get a workout, and I can identify with the other women here. I always leave with a positive and optimistic attitude," says Liz, a veteran of Kirkland Curves.
Women who live in isolation, or who have had major life tasks taken away from them, need their community. It may seem odd to some to join a gym at this time of life, bu thent Curves is not just a gym. It is a wonderful gathering of caring staff, and great people, participating in a workout program specifically made for women.
Now is the time to knock on the door of your local community to see what's out there. If you happen to knock on Kirkland Curves you will be warmly welcomed.