In honor of National Physical Therapy Month and as part of the “Fit After 50” campaign, the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and MoveForwardPT.com partnered with Huff/Post50 to determine the "Top 10 Fittest Baby Boomer Cities in America." They collected data on the 50 largest metro areas of the US and identified the top 10 cities best suited for people aged 50 and older who want to live in environments that promote healthy, active lifestyles.
Congratulations to Salt Lake City! The city has been named #6 on the list of Fittest Baby Boomer Cities in America.
Salt Lake City achieved a health and fitness score in the 85th percentile and a lifestyle score above the 60th percentile, proving itself one of the best cities for healthy, active older adults. Here are some important facts the research uncovered about the City of Saints:
- The percentage of the Baby Boomer population with health insurance is 88.
- Of the top 10 cities, Salt Lake City has the highest number of hospitals per 100,000 residents.
- Among the top 10 cities, Salt Lake City has the lowest rate of hospital readmissions, at 10.3% below the national average.
- Diagnosed cases of hypertension (45%) are 8% lower than the average of the 50 cities reviewed.
- Diagnosed cases of high cholesterol (48%) are 3.7 % lower than the average for all 50 cities researched.
- Of the top 10 cities, Salt Lake City’s population is the second most satisfied with their lives, with 95.7% reporting being "satisfied" or "very satisfied."
APTA member Curtis Jolley, PT, MOMT, a local physical therapist at Performance West Physical Therapy, wasn’t surprised his city made the top 10 list.
There's no question that when it comes to Boomer health, Salt Lake City is one of the leading cities in the US,” said Jolley. “Boomers are transforming how we traditionally think of aging by staying mobile, and physical therapists are helping them do that.
Jolley recommends Salt Lake City Boomers continue to focus on fitness and exercise and talk to a physical therapist if they have any questions or concerns. Here are some tips:
- Regular physical activity can improve bone density, posture, heart and lung function, muscle strength, joint function, sleep, and memory, among many other things. In addition, getting toned often gives you a more youthful appearance.
- Sticking with a physical activity plan lowers your risk for certain health conditions, such as fractures, falls, depression, certain cancers, stroke, hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes.
- Physical therapists support national guidelines, which recommend that you make aerobic, strengthening, flexibility, and balance activities regular components of your physical activity program. MoveForwardPT.com has more tips on staying active, fit, and healthy; to learn which exercises are right for you and your lifestyle; and to find a physical therapist near you.
- In all 50 states and the District of Columbia, you can make an appointment to be evaluated by a physical therapist directly, without a physician referral.
Congratulations, Salt Lake City!