Tanglewood Group's Comfort Today adult day program recently acquired a cybercycle that is now available to residents and to the community.
A cybercycle is a piece of exercise equipment that the American Journal of Preventive Medicine calls an "Excergame." The Expresso S3r Recumbent that Comfort Today has is a cross between an exercise bike and a video game.
According to Joanie Denn, senior wellness program director, riders who use a cybercycle are engaged in an interactive biking experience that stimulates both the mind and the body.
David Fredlund, of Jamestown, who recently underwent knee surgery, is utilizing Comfort Today’s new Cybercycle as a form of rehabilitation. He is pictured with Joanie Denn, senior wellness program director.
P-J photos by Dusten Rader
"We're turning Comfort Today more towards wellness to utilize the facility to its fullest extent," said Denn. "Wellness is very important, because if you have your health, then you have your wealth. We all need to have exercise, eat a variety of food and work our mind. Our goal is to have people come in and get on the cybercycle to get the physical part, then jump on the computer to get the mental part, sit down and have some lunch, socialize with friends, go for a walk and more."
In addition to the cybercycle guests also have access to a fitness facility in Tanglewood, a park, a spa, a kitchen for breakfast and lunch, areas for crafts, a computer center with a brain exercise game called Lumosity and more. Plus, free coffee will be offered through the month of November from 9 to 11 a.m. so that area residents can come view the facility and give the cybercycle a spin.
Denn invited David Fredlund, of Jamestown, to give the cybercycle a ride. Fredlund underwent total knee replacement four weeks before trying out the cybercycle. He spent two weeks at Lutheran doing rehabilitation and was given instructions to continue physical therapy. He was told that bicycles are the most common form of therapy. That's when he saw an article in The Post-Journal about 86-year-old Robert Woodard who cycled up to 50 miles a day to total over 325 miles during the month of August at the Senator Catharine Young Wellness Center. He was then inspired to get in touch with Denn about the Senior Wellness Program at Comfort Today.
"Joanie told me about the new cybercycle, and I couldn't wait to try it," said Fredlund. "I've rode bikes, snowmobiles, ATVs and other toys, but after riding the cybercycle this morning, I'm addicted. It's absolutely the neatest thing I've ever seen. It has a list of two to three dozen different rides that you do while looking at a screen. You have to steer the bike, shift gears, you feel the resistance of going up hill and the coasting of going down hill. It's absolutely marvelous, and my only disappointment was when I had to stop."
The cybercycle is the closest thing to the real thing that cyclists can get, but with more comfort, Fredlund said.
"Anyone who has ever ridden a road bike knows what happens to the seat," said Fredlund. "The seat on the cybercycle is designed for pure comfort. You can also bring headphones to listen to music. The cybercycle has a list of stations that allow you to select the kind of music you want."
According to Fredlund, the first time he visited Comfort Today, Denn told him about the correlation between mental and physical health.
"People that use both mental and physical activity show a drop in dementia, Alzheimer's and other diseases," said Fredlund. "So, for someone of my generation that's trying to stay active and healthy it should be an automatic 'I want to do this.' I'm not much of a game person, but looking at the screen and interacting with what's on it, you're using your mind while you're also using the bike. It's visually stimulating too because it has everything from sea-shore rides, through Redwood National park, mountains, racing tracks, snow, and you can even control go-carts to chase critters to build up points and much more."
Each user signs up for an account that stores records of previous rides. This allows for users to track their progress and even race against a "ghost" version of themselves to try to beat their best scores. The cybercycle also stores information on heart rate, gears, mileage and calories. Another feature allows users to ride with friends via the Internet. So, users could sit next to each other for a race, or race against someone on the other side of the world.
Comfort Today will host an open house on Saturday, Dec. 1, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to show the building and let people use the cybercycle. But, in the meantime, it is currently available for use with an hourly fee of $10, which also gives guests access to the rest of the physical fitness program. Call Denn at 338-0500 for more information.
The cybercycle was purchased from Advantage Sport and Fitness Inc. based out of Ithaca. For more information visit advantagefitness.co.