Residents Flock To Wellness Center
It’s a bitterly cold, snowy and icy Feb. 7 in Tyler County. School has been cancelled for the day due to an overnight ice storm. It is quite possibly a perfect day to stay indoors, curled up in a blanket and in front of the television.
However, this is not the case for occupants of the Middlebourne Wellness Center, located at 504 Cherry Street in Middlebourne. The center, formally known as the Council of Senior Tyler Countians Wellness Center, is seeing a steady stream of traffic. It’s 10 a.m., and Brenda Lancaster has already gotten her workout in for the day. Dave Roberts has just arrived and is all-business as he laces up his sneakers and heads to the treadmill for a very brisk walk. Ron Wilcox shortly arrives thereafter; after spending a good 15 to 20 minutes on one piece of equipment, he heads over to an exercise bike and begins pedaling, chatting with Roberts about the WVU Mountaineers’ basketball season.
Roberts, when asked about the center, described it as “a diamond in the rough.”
He noted that the cost can’t be beaten anywhere else.
And as for the cost, a month’s membership for anyone under 60 is $15. A family membership is $20. For those 60 and older, the center can be accessed for free, though donations are certainly encouraged.
The wellness center, located adjacent to the senior center itself, is filled with new and state of the art equipment. The center possesses cork floors, four large flat screen televisions, and a shower.
The senior center used to utilize one of its rooms as a wellness center. However, the 504 Cherry Street building has since been purchased, and the center was then moved to that location. Since then it has flourished. Stealey Green funds were used for the center’s startup. Since then, senior center director, Amy Haught, has helped write for any grants available for the center.
Pam Farhatt operates the center three days a week. At 11 a.m., on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, she leads six to eight other individuals in a Health Steps program, the Lebed Method.
This is a popular workout amongst the wellness center attendees, and Farhatt speaks of the evidence-based benefits of the workout – increased overall range of motion, increased upper body mobility, increased positive body images, decreased risk of lymphedema and reduced swelling, elevated self-esteem, improved quality of life, and more. Farhatt said the workout is good for those who have cancer or other chronic illnesses or medical conditions. Those who have attended the class report expanded lung capacity and increased agility.
Another well-attended favorite among area residents is yoga class, slated for 6 p.m. on Mondays.
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Patsy Dever and Patty Leasure split up the management of the 10 hours the center is open, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Farhatt described Leasure, on Feb. 8, as one of the center’s “most impressive people, glancing over as 80-year-old Leasure takes on a piece of equipment called called “The Arc Trainer.”
Despite being a product of the CSTC , the center is not just utilized by only senior citizens. Farhatt said she has a group of young mothers that visit the center daily, after dropping their children off at school.
Furthermore, Farhatt said a lot of people use the center as a rehabilitation facility, after undergoing surgery.
Farhatt described Roberts – who diligently walked briskly during the duration of Wednesday’s interview – as one of the wellness center’s “success stories.” Roberts, just a couple of years ago, underwent a liver transplant. However, since that time, he has utilized the wellness center to ensure daily exercise.
Visitor Wanda Parr said she is very proud of the wellness center “and the people who operate it.”
Parr, Farhatt, Leasure, and fellow friend Linda Hudson, can all be seen smiling and talking as they pose for photos and workout together. The group commented that the time flies by since they have each-other as workout buddies.
“Having a workout buddy makes you responsible to be here,” Farhatt said.
For further information on the CSTC Wellness Center, check it out on Facebook at “Middlebourne Wellness Center.” Also give the wellness center a call at 304-758-4998.