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Physical Therapist Gets Elmhurst Residents Moving

Lindsay Dobbs Helps Promote Healthy Living

Photo Provided Physical therapist Lindsay Dobbs from Blue Sky Therapy works with Joan Block, a resident at Elmhurst: The House of Friendship, to improve balance and agility.

WHEELING — Easy does it. Let’s work on our balance today. How about a nice slow stretch before we begin.

For the past three years, Blue Sky Therapy physical therapist Lindsay Dobbs has been guiding the residents at Elmhurst — The House of Friendship in their every-day challenges to maintain healthy, active lifestyles. Because the average age of residents at the licensed assisted living residence in Wheeling is well into the seniors category, Dobbs said it’s important to make them aware of how they can thrive through the aging process.

Dobbs incorporates physical, speech and occupational therapies in-house at Elmhurst, according to Elmhurst Executive Director Jamie Crow. Three days each week, residents gather at 10 a.m. to take part in the Blue Sky Therapy sessions given by Dobbs.

Dobbs makes bending, stretching and marching a part of the exercise. She also adds music and dance into the upbeat programs.

“We’ve recognized remarkable results among the residents who join in exercise and to whom Lindsay provides therapy,” Crow said, adding, “Residents are stronger, walking more steadily, and thoroughly enjoying the classes.”

Dobbs said the idea behind her instructions is to keep the residents active. “I work on their gait and balance which are important to prevent falls.”

According to the National Council on Aging, “Falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for older Americans. Falls threaten seniors’ safety and independence and generate enormous economic and personal costs.

“However, falling is not an inevitable result of aging. Through practical lifestyle adjustments, evidence-based falls prevention programs and clinical-community partnerships, the number of falls among seniors can be substantially reduced.”

Dobbs embraces that adage and works to keep the residents “active and involved to thrive.”

Crow continues to recognize the positive results in Elmhurst’s residents who have chosen to utilize Blue Sky for their prescribed therapies. “Our residents truly enjoy their interaction with Blue Sky personnel. It’s been a wonderful addition to our services. Lindsay, and occupational therapist Lisa Eskins, are front and center with their positivity,” Crow said.

Working with Elmhurst’s residents who range in age from their late 70s to 100, is something Dobbs finds satisfying. Watching their progress in physical therapy sessions and exercise class is rewarding, she added.

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