Mind and Body

85-year-old woman busts a move at Zumba class

There are many physical, mental and emotional benefits associated with exercising for seniors. See how one grandma is spicing things up with Zumba


Zumba classes have skyrocketed in popularity over the past couple years, and lately, they’ve been gaining favor among an entirely new age group – seniors.

85-year-old Alice Gross, who is soon to be a great-grandmother, said she tries to take Zumba class every day. She called exercise her “fountain of youth.”

“It keeps you healthy, it keeps you alive, it keeps you young,” Gross said.  “I don’t feel 85.  I don’t think about it.”

Gross said she enjoyed the moves and the beat of the music in the classes.

“There is something in that music that’s got a real force to it,” Gross said, adding that she has no plans on stopping any time soon.

Dr. Joyce Fogel, chief of Geriatrics at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York, said exercise is important for seniors on many different levels.

“We know that exercise has benefits in managing high blood pressure, diabetes, and it's very important for osteoporosis,” Fogel said. “I think that when people have memory problems that they more engaged they are and involved with other people and keeping busy, the better it is for them.”

Fogel advised that seniors talk with their doctors before beginning any new fitness routines, but said she was impressed with Gross.

“I think she should be the poster child for exercise in the elderly,” Fogel said. “Not everybody can do that, so it's great that she can.”