Team Strong Silvers, a senior citizens health and fitness interest group, came together in October 2013, with the primary objective of encouraging senior citizens to age actively, and the younger generation to invest in the health earlier in life. Hailing from different sporting backgrounds, the team chose Calisthenics as its exercise platform as it required little in the terms of equipment, yet gave great benefits in terms of functionality and strength. In addition, these benefits can be clearly displayed – underscoring the team’s health and fitness messaging to all age groups.
The founding members of Team Strong Silvers are Mr. Ng Bee Kia, 71 – a former national team weightlifter; Mr. Ngai Hin Kwok, 67 a semi-retired jeweler and endurance sports enthusiast; and Mr. Ng Siu Chi, 58 – a vehicle mechanic, former bodybuilder and wushu enthusiast. Other active members include Mr. Peng Lin Hua, 76 — a retired teacher and table-tennis enthusiast, Mr. Victor Chan, 64 – a swimming pool supervisor and competing triathlete and Mr. Seah Kuan Soon, 62 — a cleaner and all-round fitness enthusiast.
The team primarily utilizes social media to spread its healthy lifestyle message. It has a Facebook account where it adopts a lifestyle modelling approach by either showing the latest training sessions or “a slice of life” content such as individual members going about their conditioning exercises or household chores. The team readily responds to requests for calisthenics displays by organizations working with the elderly, such as the Econ group and TOUCH Caregivers Support. It also works with the media departments of government related agencies on healthy lifestyle matters, being featured on their publications, both on print and e-platforms. These agencies include the Community Development Councils, and Sengkang Health.
The team stands by studies that senior citizens respond better to physical training when facilitated by their peers. Many senior citizens find it a mental challenge to meet the expectations of younger trainers, even if they actually quite capable meeting and exceeding the requested performance. Leveraging on Mr. Ng Bee Kia and Mr. Ng Siu Chi’s experience of coaching senior citizens at their community club gym, the team has in its collaborations with fitness service providers found these studies to be true — as the elderly participants at Fei Yue Seniors Activity Centre and TOUCH Caregivers Support responded enthusiastically to the training sessions. In addition to on-site training, the team also provides fitness training content, such as training manuals and videos. By showing a local senior citizen performing the moves, the users experience ready identification and enhanced learning.