The Wait is Over! Priority Registration Begins on September 8
The wait is almost over! “A Reunion for the Ages” and 23 Miles of GOLDen Coastline are calling you to Fort Lauderdale, Florida for the 2022 National Senior Games presented by Humana on May 10-23, 2022!
Registration for qualified athletes to attend the 2022 National Senior Games presented by Humana will begin on Wednesday, September 8th at 1:00 pm Eastern Time. NSGA has started emailing qualification notices to athletes who qualified through the Adjusted Qualification Process or at a State Qualifying Senior Games in 2020 or 2021. Athletes qualifying for the FIRST time in 2021 will be eligible to register for the respective sport/event after the state submits 2021 results to NSGA, results are verified AND the respective state and sport are listed on the NSGA website.
Check out the NSGA Registration Page for registration dates, 2021 state results status, entry fees, deadlines and details.
Not familiar with the modified qualification process adopted in response to the pandemic? Review the 2022 Qualification Adjustments on the How To Qualify Page.
Online Housing Program is a Hit with Athletes!
Once you have schedule and venue information, it’s time to find the perfect place to stay while visiting Greater Fort Lauderdale. The NSGA online housing program is already booking up athletes and the feedback has been positive. You will be pleased with the ease of narrowing your choices and rates to find properties nearest to your venue. We have negotiated best rates and terms, and you will have support of a team that understands your needs. Plus, you know you will be staying with other Senior Games athletes.
The Competition Schedules Page has the Age Specific Schedule (which provides dates for most events and age groups) as well as Golf Course Assignments, Racquetball Schedule, Tennis Event Schedule, Track & Field Schedule and Swimming Order of Events.
Visit the NSGA Hotels and Lodging Page to find your place. There’s even a handy Mileage-At-A-Glance chart you can download that shows distances from sport venues to each hotel to help with your planning. Book now for best selections!
2022 Venue Spotlight: Golf Offered at Three Courses
August is National Golf Month, and Florida is a golfer’s Mecca! We have selected three of the best courses in the region for National Senior Games championship play. Each course offers the appropriate challenges for age groups in the 54-hole scratch play format for the Games. The venues are:
- Jacaranda Golf Club in Plantation, West course. Take a Virtual Tour Here.
- Plantation Preserve Golf Course & Club, also in Plantation, is a public facility with a country club atmosphere with country club service!
- Country Club of Coral Springs is situated among the woods and waterways in one of the city’s most distinctive residential neighborhoods.
2022 Golf competition is sponsored by KOHLER Walk-In Bath, which also supports the new NSG CUP Presented by KOHLER Walk-in Bath awarded to the state with the highest percentage of medals. Tee up more information on the Golf Sport Page.
Stay in Shape and Bring a Friend to State Games!
Next May is coming up fast and you want to be in your best competition form. Many State Games are still on the schedule this year and offer the perfect opportunity to stay in the game. You might even invite a friend to go with you to try out Senior Games and get qualified to join you at the National Senior Games.
Check out the updated State Games calendar and games contacts at the State Information Page at NSGA.com to plan your path to Greater Fort Lauderdale through our Member Games!
Watersports Abound in Greater Fort Lauderdale
Greater Fort Lauderdale offers 300+ days of sunshine a year and year-round ocean temperatures from 72 to 80 degrees. This beach destination offers water sports enthusiasts everything from yacht rentals to surfing lessons. Whether you want to dive deep or just dip your toes in, Greater Fort Lauderdale welcomes you with plenty of options for fun in the sun.
It’s easy to spend a day at the beach, with soft sands, beachfront promenades and piers. Or explore below the surface with 76 artificial reefs on the ocean floor as magnets for fish and reef life and the largest collection of warm-water wrecks in the Western world. It is also the only place in the continental USA where you can snorkel and dive on a living coral reef straight off the beach. You can even get scuba certified while during your vacation.
Greater Fort Lauderdale is one of the few areas in the world where both fresh water and salt water fishing are within 20 minutes of the angler. In addition to more than 200 freshwater species that can be caught in the numerous lakes and canals, there are deep sea fishing fleets located in Fort Lauderdale, Deerfield Beach, Pompano Beach, Dania Beach and Hollywood.
Paddleboard or kayak in the Atlantic Ocean, among the winding canals of the Intracoastal Waterway, or in nature parks. For a fun group outing, take an ecotour or a full moon tour.
Come see why Greater Fort Lauderdale is a water sport enthusiast’s dream.
Personal Best Feature: Courting History
Joyce Jones has won a pile of championships and medals in three racket sports over the past seven decades. In our view, however, some of her best accomplishments with Senior Games have been off the court. In 1998, Washington state had no qualifying games for the National Senior Games, so Joyce and her late husband Don (also an athlete) stepped up to organize, grow and manage qualifying events for 15 years.
Joyce also holds an important place in pickleball history, as you will find out when you follow our conversation with her. Joyce has a Personal Best spirit that has helped many others get on the path to fitness, fun and fellowship!
August Athlete of the Month
Keeping Up with Kathy – Kathy Bergen, 81, La Canada, California
It’s hard to keep up with elite track and field star Kathy Bergen, whether it’s her competitors or the statisticians. She was the most decorated athlete at the National Senior Games in Albuquerque in 2019, chalking up three American and five National Senior Games records. After nine appearances, Kathy’s name appears 23 times over four age groups in NSG All-Time Performances. Twelve are in the #1 spot.
Her legacy continues to grow across the masters track landscape, as she now holds a total of 42 American and 28 world records. After she set two more world records (in W 80-84 100M and 200M events) at masters meets this year, we had to chase her down to comment on her success.
It’s no surprise to find that Kathy earns every medal, training and competing year-round as intensely as any elite athlete of any age or sport. “I learned a little late in life that you can’t take shortcuts to get where you want to go,” she observes. “You have to put in the work.”
Setting lofty goals is another key to maintain her focus. “Every time I age up into a new division, I make a goal to set a new record in six events- the 60-meter, 200-meter and High Jump indoors, and 100, 200 and High Jump in outdoor competition,” she says. “I’m pleased to have met that and added one more in the 80-84 group in my first year as the youngest. Most likely I won’t set any more records in the 80-85 group, but I don’t want to ever lose an event either.
“I want to win every event I’m in. That’s just it,” she asserts. “I want to be the fastest kid on the block.”
Kathy credits her husband Bert, who also competes in field events, for being the perfect partner in her athletic pursuits. “It’s great fun because we both have to put so much time into this. I don’t just start working out before a meet, I work out all year,” she explains. “Bert does too, so we understand each other’s goals and the time and effort necessary to do this. It’s nice to share the journey with someone.”
The grandmother of 13 did not run her first race until she was 54 and Bert was 56. “I had no idea there was track for older people. Bert read about it in a magazine and we decided to try it,” she recalls. “I was a very competitive tennis player before this. I still love to play tennis, but I love track and field more. But I guess it’s easy to like something when you’re good at it.”
While she is laser-focused in competition, Kathy also enjoys the social interactions with her peers, and contributing as one of the eldest members of her all-age SC Striders track club. “It’s fun see all the women I compete with each time. It’s nice being with people as crazy as I am!”
What’s YOUR story? To submit yours, or to nominate a fellow athlete, Please Click Here.
Health and Well-Being
Balance Training: Key for Superior Senior Games Performance
Balance specific training is absolutely important for optimal sports performance. All National Senior Games athletes would benefit from including balance training in their routines, yet most neglect to make time for balance-specific training. Our balance changes as we age. Sensory organs (eyes and ears) give us less accurate position information as the nerve impulses traveling to and from our brain slow down.
Balance specific training can assist in overcoming some of these challenges. Dr. Becca Jordre, DPT, the lead researcher for the Senior Athlete Fitness Exam (SAFE), answers questions on balance training from Director of Health and Well-being Andrew Walker.
Q. Is it true that even Senior Games athletes would benefit from balance training?
A. Absolutely! We know that Senior Games athletes experience fewer falls than the general population but, on average, just over 10% of NSGA athletes still fall in a given year. In groups of higher functioning older adults like Senior Games athletes it has been determined that falls are different. They are more likely to occur outside, while performing more intense activities and are thus more often linked to serious injury. Senior Games athletes should strive to have balance that fits their active lifestyles and their pursuit of athletic competition. No one is immune to the declines in balance that are seen with aging, but there are strategies for maintaining better balance and preventing falls.
Q. I’m not concerned about falling. Are there any other reasons I should care about balance?
A. Great question! Balance is actually key to superior sport performance. Running, for instance involves a lot of time (and balance) on just one foot. Golf requires controlled weight shifting to alternate legs and the dynamic nature of sports like volleyball and basketball definitely require superior balance. Training for balance in these situations will enhance sport performance along with keeping you off the ground!
Q. If I am currently not doing balance training, how do I start?
A. If you haven’t been engaged in balance training there are a lot of simple ways to get started. The Health and Well-being tab at NSGA.com has many resources. Start with the Balance Training for Athletes Over 50 handout that shows great ways to improve static and dynamic balance and offers methods for making these exercises more difficult as your balance improves. In addition, experience advanced dynamic/reactionary balance training using the Clock Yourself App shown in the Balance Training video.
Q. What can the SAFE assessment tell me about improving my balance?
A. The SAFE screens for fall risk and assesses balance under several conditions. You may discover what conditions challenge your balance the most which can help you to focus your training in that area. You’ll learn about which senses you rely most on for balance and how strength may be making you’re more or less at risk for falling. If you haven’t done the screening at the Games, come see us and learn more about your balance!
This article was prepared by Andrew Walker, MPH, NSGA Health and Well-being Director
How to Safely Exercise Outdoors in the Summer Heat
This informative article comes from KOHLER Walk-in Bath, a proud National Senior Games partner.
As temperatures continue to climb, finding ways to beat the heat can become challenging. Exercises done outdoors in cooler temps suddenly become much more challenging under the scorching summer sun. And while it’s certainly more comfortable to stay indoors to work out, there are ways to exercise outdoors safely in the heat.
1. Stay Hydrated
The most obvious tip is the most important one: drink lots and lots of water before, during and after an outdoor workout. Aim for at least 16 ounces of water before you head outside. If you exercise for longer than 60 minutes outdoors, a sports drink with electrolytes can replenish nutrients and keep you hydrated.
2. Strategically Time Your Workouts
If you want to exercise outdoors, try to do so before 10 a.m., as temperatures peak between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Morning workouts are typically better, especially for unshaded runs, as concrete will retain the heat from the day and radiate it back during an afternoon or evening run.
3. Mix Up Your Workouts With Heat-Friendly Activities
Summer is the perfect time to incorporate swimming laps, stand-up paddle boarding or yoga in a shaded park into your exercise regimen. A summer afternoon rain can also provide some refreshing conditions for an otherwise toasty run (just make sure to wear shoes with extra grip!).
4. Try An Acclimatizing Soak
To help your body acclimatize to the heat, take a warm shower or bath soak for at least 10 minutes after your workout. This will help your body continue to get accustomed to the heat and encourage it to produce more sweat sooner to keep you cool during your next workout.
*Note: Please use your best judgment and/or consult your physician before starting an outdoor workout routine.
Health & Well-Being Partners
NSGA Sport Partners