Silver Sneakers

What is Silver Sneakers?

Silver Sneakers is a program founded in the 1990’s that gives members access to gyms and fitness classes, and is a benefit provided by many Medicare Advantage plans.

Who can enroll in Silver Sneakers?

Although the program says it is designed for people 65 and older, membership is available to Medicare Advantage enrollees of all ages if their insurer offers it. Having a Medicare Advantage plan that includes Silver Sneakers is the only way to participate in the program.

What are Silver Sneakers benefits?

Members have access to over 16,000 gyms, community centers, and fitness facilities across the U.S. Silver Sneakers also provides access to exercise classes taught at recreation centers, parks and other locations.

Do all Medicare plans offer Silver Sneakers?

You cannot add a Silver Sneakers benefit to your Medicare Advantage coverage – a plan either comes with Silver Sneakers or it does not. Some Medicare Advantage plans provide reimbursement for gym memberships or fitness programs other than the Silver Sneakers program. Original Medicare never includes a Silver Sneakers membership.

While gym access or exercise classes are a nice benefit to have, they shouldn’t be the only thing you consider when choosing between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage or when choosing a specific Advantage plan. We wrote more here about choosing the right Medicare coverage.

Silver Sneakers offers a website you can use to check whether your Medicare Advantage plan includes it as a benefit.

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