Does Anthem Provide SilverSneakers?
Yes. Anthem provides the SilverSneakers program to all its policyholders.
Beyond SilverSneakers, Anthem offers several other benefits:
- 30-day free look period
- Household Discount on the Premium (where available)
- Portable coverage
- Ability to choose any doctor who accepts Medicare as a form of payment
What is SilverSneakers?
History of the Program
The SilverSneakers Fitness program was founded in 1992 by Mary Swanson. Mary’s father survived a heart attack at age 51. She watched his recovery and the determination he had to improve his health. Because of her knowledge of health and fitness, Mary helped him design a program for strength, flexibility, and cardio fitness. Knowing his commitment, she supported him with accountability that ultimately transformed his health and life. This basic program of exercise plus accountability became the bedrock of the SilverSneakers program she later created.
After her father’s transformation, Mary realized other people his age or older needed the same information and support. She began networking with gyms, fitness centers, and other healthcare outlets across the country to provide these resources to anyone over the age of 65.
Medicare Supplement insurance companies eventually reached out to her to incorporate the program into their benefit plans. They knew that by enhancing the health care of their customers, they could lower costs for all of their clients.
Since 1992, Silver Sneakers has grown into a nationwide network with more than 16,000 participating fitness and wellness centers, including many YMCAs. It serves more than 13 million eligible members.
SilverSneakers Program Basics and Details
The basic mission of SilverSneakers is to increase health, mobility and overall quality of life for adults over 65.
This includes gym access, fitness program, and even social activity. Because of the extensive network of gyms and fitness centers, SilverSneakers membership offers these benefits:
- Gym Equipment: Access to fully functional gyms with exercise equipment including weight machines, free weights, cardio equipment, tracks, and even pools.
- Health Classes: Most areas offer classes such as SilverSplash, Cardio Circuit, SilverSneakers YogaStretch, Weight circuit, and CardioFit. Classes are designed for every fitness goal. Many classes are designed to help seniors with physical limitations and healthcare challenges.
- Social Activities: SilverSneakers sponsors activities and social events in many communities.
- Progress Tracking: Participants have access to HealthwaysFIT.com. This is an online healthcare resource for members to monitor fitness progression, track health-related current events, and even obtain nutritious recipes.
- Program Advisors: Certified trainers and instructors who can help you reach any health goals you have and keep you accountable in the process.
- SilverSneakers has a location search on its site to determine what is available in your area.
- Mobile App: SilverSneakers created Go, a smartphone app designed to help participants discover, plan and track their workouts.
- On-Demand Exercise Videos: Training videos that provide workouts and instruction you can access 24/7 and use at home.
For many of us, it’s been years since we stepped inside a gym. It can be intimidating exercising next to a 20-year-old powerlifter. Silver Sneakers understands this and has created healthcare programs for various levels and ages to jump this hurdle. There are introductory programs that participants can take advantage of to incorporate fitness back into their life in a safe manner.
SilverSneakers offers other benefits beyond the basic membership plans. Some of those benefits require extra fees that your insurance carrier may not provide. For example, personal training, tanning, and massage are often extras available for a reduced charge.
Who is Eligible for SilverSneakers?
When you hear about SilverSneakers you may think, “This is too good to be true! Free gym access, classes, pools, and even massages. Why isn’t every senior taking advantage of this?”
Many seniors don’t know about it.
You may be eligible today. One in every 5 people over 65 qualifies for the program because of benefits they get from their Medicare Supplement insurance carrier.
One thing to remember: SilverSneakers is not covered under Original Medicare Part A and Part B. Medicare Advantage, also known as Part C, may provide the benefit. Many Medicare Supplement companies provide the benefit.
The best resource to discover whether you have free access to SilverSneakers plans is to contact your health insurance company or visit the SilverSneakers online health plan finder.
It’s important to remember that even if an insurance company offers SilverSneakers, the fitness program may not be a part of every plan. For example, SilverSneakers membership might be included if you buy an insurance company’s Medigap Plan G, but not if you buy Plan N. If SilverSneakers is important to you, be sure to check that it’s included before you decide which plan to buy.
Because you were searching for Anthem and SilverSneakers, you probably want to know if Anthem offers the benefit. Maybe you are considering Anthem for one of their Supplement insurance products, and are looking at the extra benefits before deciding.
Let’s go over the basics of Anthem and then discuss the benefits it offers.