This is my third attempt at writing this review. I am normally pretty prolific; once I have something in my head I can knock out a first draft in about 20 or 30 minutes. I did finally figure out why I had such a difficult time, but I want to start with my overall impressions of Age of Champions:
- I was wowed by, and maybe even intimidated by, the world champion senior women’s basketball team where the youngest member is age 65 and the team would have crushed me . . . . when I was teenager.
- There was a competitor who could hardly wait to get to the 100+ category in tennis.
- I was inspired by the two African American brothers who first learned to swim in the reflecting pool that sits between the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial, because there were no nearby swimming pools that allowed blacks to swim.
It would be unfair to share any more of the stories here, because this movie is a must see.
Here is who should see it:
I am talking high school and Jr. High School. It ought to be shown to every single teen because they think life is over by the time they hit fifty or sixty. The film says, “stay in fit; get it fit”, because when you hit 60, 70 or 80 and even 90 you still have great potential.
Senior Service Providers
Many of the people we serve are past the point of being able to participate in a senior Olympic, but it reminds each of us that we need to do more than just entertain our residents and clients to death. It reminds us there is a powerful link between physical activity and mental health.
Line Care Workers
These are the people in the trenches getting their hands dirty every day, doing laundry, giving baths, cleaning toilets, washing dishes and taking out the trash. It is a tremendous reminder of the potential of old age. I think every senior housing community ought show the movie to their team and use it as a springboard to talk about how they can improve the quality of life for each resident.
There are lots of people looking to put money into senior housing, because it is the bright spot in the real estate investment world. It is reminder to investors that when they invest in senior housing they have the ability to do great good or great harm depending on how those investments are managed.
Adults Approaching Retirement
Too often, retirement is seen as a time to slow down and do less. No doubt, as we get older we have to make compensations, but this is a powerful motivator to maintain an active lifestyle.
So . . . . here is where I struggled: Is this something good or bad to show seniors who have already moved into assisted living or skilled nursing? Will it be a good experience for families of those who have moved into a senior housing community? Will it be like when I watch a Warren Miller Ski/Snowboard movie? I know could never do the feats those gifted snow sport families do and yet it inspires me to hit the slopes to create my own bucket of fun; or, does the move become just be a depressing reminder of what is beyond the reach of these seniors; perhaps even a reminder of what they neglected when they were younger? Here is a clip for you to watch: Have you shown the film to your seniors? How did it go? You can learn how to host a showing here. Steve Moran