2015 Medal Design Revealed
For those who are dreaming of the medal stand in Minnesota, here is the design for our 2015 medals. Register, train hard and smart, and you might find one around your neck. But it’s also important to remember that the health and vitality you derive from your fitness and competition is the ultimate reward. Give it your best!
Reminder: 2015 Games Registration Closes Midnight Friday, May 1
The deadline for registering for The 2015 National Senior Games presented by Humana is rapidly approaching. Why wait until May 1 and have to hurry to complete your registration? Minnesota is buzzing with anticipation and can’t wait to give you a warm, welcoming embrace. Register online today!
Helpful Links for Athletes
Housing – Book your room online for a chance to win one of three $500 Mall of America gift cards!
Hotel and Venue Map – See where to play and where to stay
Air Travel – Go here to get discount code to save on your flight booking with Delta Airlines
Local Public Transportation – Get a deep discounted 7 day pass to use the outstanding Metro Transit system. The page has a handy chart showing routes for various sport venues, and the Metro Transit main website has more information and a handy trip planner to help you get around.
Team/Partner Finder – Go here to find opportunities being posted by athletes and teams looking for someone to compete with.
Volunteer For The Games page – For those of you who love to get involved with The Games off the field of play. Find and select a slot for where you want to help and register online.
These are just of few of the pages packed with information that you will find by clicking and exploring through the 2015 National Games section under National Games at NSGA.com.
Great News – One Venue for All Track and Field Events
The track and field staff at the University of St. Thomas has worked out a way to accommodate all track and field events at the campus. The St. Thomas staff was able to create two high jump and two shot put areas, which eliminates the need to add Concordia University for some field events.
In additional news, officials will also be using laser measuring to speed up the discus event. NSGA thanks our local organizers and the University of St. Thomas team for coming up with a plan that will enhance our track athletes’ experience at the 2015 National Senior Games presented by Humana.
More 2015 Personal Best Athlete Profiles Online
The Personal Best “Class of 2015” continues to roll out with two more new athlete profiles designed to inspire all aging adults to find their own Personal Best attitude through their examples:
The 2015 NSGA Personal Best Tour will again be on the road spotlighting more athletes from the states we will visit. Prior to The Games, we will join events at Mississippi Senior Olympics on April 17 and the Indiana State Senior Games on May 14. Also watch for news on two special programs to be held in Minnesota during the National Senior Games. Visit thePersonal Best page at NSGA.com for all profiles and information.
HUMANA Heroes: Athlete of the Month
Carving the Lanes – and Birds
Some people take up sports as a hobby. Jim Barksdale of Steeleville, Missouri certainly has fun bowling, but considers his five decades of rolling the rock as a bit more than a hobby. Along the way he has collected a 25 year American Bowling Congress tournament plaque, multiple Missouri Senior Olympic medals of all colors, plus more gathered in regular trips for National Senior Games competition since 2007.
Barksdale’s real hobby is wood carving, which he has been doing for over 50 of his 79 years. He liked to whittle, and carved a pair of miniature herons as a third anniversary present for his wife. “I never dreamed about selling my work,
but a few years later I sold a couple of pieces at a show and it just snowballed.” To date, he has sold more than 6,000 pieces, mostly shorebirds and songbirds. “They’ve gone to every state and all over the world,” he says with a mixture of pride and disbelief. “I do it really to support my habit of collecting old decoys and duck calls.”
Barksdale, now retired from a career in the women’s shoe industry, started bowling in 1957 when the only place to play was an old center in the nearby town of Cuba. “There were six wooden lanes and they had pin boys setting the pins,” he chuckles. “A few years later a new Brunswick bowling center was built here in Steelville.”
The kegler’s signature moments? “Shooting a 300 game in 1981 was exciting, but the peak for me was when I scored an 807 scratch during qualifying play at the Missouri Senior Olympics in 2006. That continues to be a state record.” Another was when he and younger doubles partner Dennis Sandstrom won the Gold at the National Senior Games presented by Humana in 2009. “I had to “play down” in the 50-54 age division. We were so excited about winning-I remember Dennis ran around town all night in his bowling shoes. He forgot to take them off.”
Another peak experience was as a proud father. Barksdale’s daughter, Jan Weisel, caught the bowling bug from him and recalls her dad’s relentless recruitment for Senior Games. “When I was 47 he started asking ‘Are you 50 yet?’ and kept after me,” she says. “He was anxious to see me come play.”
Not only did she show up, the now 54 year old captured the Gold in singles play at her national debut in Houston in 2011, and then the father-daughter team took the Bronze in the 50-54 mixed doubles division. The pair now enjoy sharing the Senior Games experience and look forward to the trip north to Minnesota for 2015. “It’s like Doublemint gum – it doubles the pleasure,” Jim quips.
We had to ask if Barksdale had ever considered carving a bowling ball or pin for the fun of it. His reply? “No – but thinking about it, I might carve a ten pin just because I hate that thing.”
We’re always looking for great athlete stories. Submit yours or nominate a fellow athlete who inspires you at our Athlete of the Month page at NSGA.com!
Senior Health and Wellness
Fitness Age Test and NSGA Survey Update
We have currently received more than 3,200 responses to the NSGA Fitness Age Survey – GREAT job athletes! However, more is better and we need as many as possible to take the Fitness Age Test and report your Fitness Age to NSGA. This will help us prepare a scientific report to share with the world.
We have had feedback that some of you were not able to access or complete the Fitness Age Test. The Norwegian research team reports that at times their website had very high volume and that probably caused the difficulty. If you are one of those who had an issue, please try again. If you haven’t done it yet, do it – every single response is important!
Dr.Pam Peeke Senior Games Blog: Sugar in Your Food Quiz
Athletes need to optimize their nutrition throughout training. The goal is to find the most optimal nutrition to provide the fuel to compete. In this month’s blog, Dr. Peeke offers a fun little quiz-reminder about one particular ingredient-sugar-and how to avoid excess refined, processed sugar in our training diets. Read Dr. Pam Peeke’s Senior Games blog Sugar in Your Food Quiz here.
Listen to Your Ears – They Might be Telling You Something!
According to Dr. Sara Burdak, Senior Director of Education & Audiology at Starkey Hearing Technologies, the more we learn about hearing loss, the more we discover that it frequently accompanies other health conditions. Did you know?
So what’s the take away? Get your hearing tested! Your hearing is one of the body’s most remarkable senses. It connects us with the world around us.
Starkey Hearing Technologies is proud to be the Official Hearing Partner of the 2015 National Senior Games Presented by Humana. Be sure to visit them at booth #219 at the Village Expo to learn more about hearing health.
NSGA Online Merchandise Store
Train in Style
So now it’s April and you are getting serious about your competition. We can help you get your training down to a T – training in a 2015 Logo Tee Shirt, that is!
Visit The NSGA Store at NSGA.com where you will find a wide variety of gear in your choice of sizes and colors. Get in now and wear it proudly!