What Is Adaptive Aerobics?

Adaptive aerobics is an exercise program designed for seniors and disabled persons of all ages. The one hour low-impact aerobic and yoga class utilizes gentle range of motion exercise to increase your cardiovascular endurance and to build, strengthen, and tone your muscles. All exercises are performed to music which helps to improve your timing, rhythm, and coordination.


Karen Lynn Karen has been teaching for more than 15 years and has been dancing since the age of 3 1/2 years old. She has overcome the effects of Cerebral Palsy and the need to wear a brace on one leg in her early years to become an able dancer and a proficient teacher. She has taught exercise classes at various clubs and organizations throughout the Southern California area, including convalescent homes and senior centers.


Karen currently Freelances. She is a motivational speaker and advocate’s for the disabled. She served on the Board of Protection & Advocacy Inc., from 2002 to 2004



By Susan Hellman

Karen Lynn of Los Angeles says the aerobics class she teaches is for seniors, disabled and able-bodied persons, or any one, of any age. In other words, everyone is welcome in her classes, held four times a week at the Beverly Hills Family Y. In one recent class, a group of senior participants seemed to feel welcome and to be having a terrific time as they stretched, cycled, flexed and bent to classical music for the hour-long workout.


Lynn is enthusiastic, as evidenced by continual good-natured coaching. “You can just a little further, bend, streeeetch!” she yells She also frequently adds “If I can do it, you do it.” As a cerebral palsy victim herself, < some of the exercises is a proud achievement her as for some of her class members.

USES ALL PARTS Lynn has designed her class to utilize all of the body and all of the muscles during warm up, sitting, standing, floor and cool exercise stage. Though nothing is done by 1 Lynn encourages her students to execute motions slowly and to straighten limbs completely when warrant a particular exercise.

Lynn is an expert on using body parts that want to resist. It was through dancing tha overcame many of the physical limitations has known for many of her 36 years, remembers struggling through years of da lessons with a brace on one leg. In spite c disability, she earned an AA degree in that field.


Lynn’s philosophy for herself and for her students is to focus on what a person does have, not on what he does not have. For instance, she taught one paraplegic participant to focus on what mobility he did have in one arm and one leg, rather then dwelling on the immobility. He was able to improve his motor coordination through her techniques. Lynn adds one other very important philosophy for herself and her students: “I want us to have a good time. This is really important to me.” Apparently it is important to her class members, too, as goodnatured cajoling and banter appear to be an integral part of the session. And like students everywhere, Lynn’s students include “pulling one over” on the teacher as a necessary part of classroom conduct: when she loses count while doing toe touches, they try hard to convince her that the fifth stretch down they are doing is really the ninth.

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