“Fit for Age” Project in New Taipei City
According to the definition of ageing by World Health Organization, when a region or a country has more than 7% population of 65 years old people, it is known as “ageing society.” New Taipei City shares a large gray population up to 10.5% and low fertility of 9.69%, so how to prepare its citizens for an old healthy life is important.
The project of “Fit for Age” was launched in 2016, trying to make a habit for citizens on a regular exercise basis via the 3 triple 333: working out 3 days a week, 30 minutes every day, with heart rate 133 beats per minute. In addition, the government works with hospitals, clinics, sports centers, local communities and local technology companies as well to help citizens do exercise based on their personal health plan.
An “Fit for Age App” was developed and implemented based on the data being recorded in the app. Medical professionals and fitness trainers can grasp instantly the overall physical status. In so doing, the long-term goal of building up a “Sports City” to involve everyone to participate in sports can be reached gradually.
The pre-frail state in remote areas such as Ruifang, Pingxi, Sungai and Gong Liu was quite high up to 48. 8% and the frailty syndrome was at 13.3%, which was higher than the average rate over Taiwan, 5.4%. The frailty would lead to low endurance, decreased balance and mobility which cause high risk for falls, physical inactivity, loss of independence and autonomy, and increase the rate of death for older people. However, frailty is reversible. It can be improved through regular exercise, management of nutrition and chronic disease to strength skeletal muscle, reduced frailty and related complications.
To reach the goal of frailty prevention, a project not only for the older people but for all citizens was raised, the so-called “Fit for Age.” New Taipei City Government takes the lead to be a health provider and a professional consult for its citizens and prepares them for an old healthy life.
Take the fit-for age program for the elderly as an example. A health check-up is first offered and further examinations on slow performances, muscle intensity, skeletal muscle and related checkup are given.
Next, a follow-up plan for exercise such as up to 1,080 minutes movement offered by the professional fitness trainers is offered.
Subsequently, nutrition courses/counseling through hospitals, clinics, sports centers, local communities and local technology companies or other intervention program by the medical system may be involved when in need. In addition, for in-depth support, questionnaires both on nutrition knowledge and on attitude/behavior change are implemented at the same time to find out more in-depth data and offer more support for individuals. The questions covered dietary calorie, nutrient intake, frequency, and intake of important food categories.
Two-way communication platforms such as Health Passbook and Health Apps offered real-time feedback for the older people is quite useful and meets personal needs.
Finally, the incorporation resources from the national sports centers, community and other related medical system is included and then give a 8 up to 12 weeks fitness course or nutrition and health intervention plan based on personal needs. “Fit for Age” project is still on its initiated stage and the substantial.
Substantial Results/ Impacts
One results are under construction toward various groups of people. However, the target group of more than 65 years old citizens through the program benefits in the improvement of the muscle mass in different levels, hand grip strength and other related muscle enhancement. The aims to maintain older people in autonomy and independence will be reached gradually.