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What Is SilverSneakers™? Does Medicare Cover This Program?

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Summary: SilverSneakers helps the 65+ crowd stay fit by providing access to gym memberships, weight training, aerobics, and group exercise classes. Many Medicare Advantage plans cover SilverSneakers.

Adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous aerobic activity, recommends the American Heart Association. Ideally this activity should be spread throughout the week. This recommendation is something to pay attention to, knowing that heart disease is the leading cause of death in Americans in 2016 to 2017. A Harvard study calls exercise an “insurance policy that may offer both short and long term protection for your heart.”

Exercise may not be easy if you feel stuck at home with no exercise equipment. That’s where SilverSneakers comes in. What are the basics about SilverSneakers? SilverSneakers is a program encouraging older adults to participate in physical activities that will help them to maintain greater control of their health. SilverSneakers sponsors activities and social events designed to keep those 65 and older healthy while encouraging social interaction. As well as keeping you physically healthy, SilverSneakers can contribute to your overall well-being by connecting you to others in fitness classes and helping you stay social. According to SilverSneakers.com, 88 percent of SilverSneakers members say that SilverSneakers has improved the quality of their life.

SilverSneakers is available around the country, and membership provides access to any participating gym location–including all amenities included with basic level access. Each SilverSneakers location is outfitted with an advisor who will introduce you to the program and help get you started. SilverSneakers also includes an invitation to sponsored health education seminars and other fitness-related events.

What does SilverSneakers include?

SilverSneakers includes a network of fitness facilities that includes access to thousands of gyms. You will be able to use any participating location. With SilverSneakers, you’ll be able to use amenities like weight machines, treadmills, ellipticals, pools, walking tracks, and group exercise classes. SilverSneakers also includes an on-demand video library of workout classes. 

How much does SilverSneakers cost?

SilverSneakers may be no-cost to you when included in certain Medicare Advantage plans.

What does SilverSneakers not include?

SilverSneakers does not generally include protein smoothies, massages, or personal training.

Medicare Advantage plans may cover SilverSneakers

SilverSneakers is considered a basic fitness service and Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, does not cover this benefit. However, Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Medicare Part C, may provide this benefit. To see if your current Medicare Advantage plan includes the SilverSneakers program, contact your health plan directly, or visit the SilverSneakers online health plan finder to check.

If you are looking to enroll into a Medicare Advantage plan with SilverSneakers coverage, take a look at our eHealthMedicare plan comparison tool on this page. The tool lets you review a list of Medicare Advantage plans available in your service area and explore your Medicare plan options.

To find a Medicare Advantage plan with SilverSneakers in your area, enter your zip code on this page.

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