Andrew Walker (age 65) is the Health and Well-being Director of the National Senior Games Association.We spoke with Andrew about his life-long devotion to wellness (his eighth-grade science fair project was about the health benefits of exercise it got third place) and how theres still time to throw your hat in the ring for the 2025 National Senior Games!For more information about the National Senior Games and Andrews writings on wellness at any age, subscribe to the NSGA newsletter here!What are the National Senior Games and why are they important?The National Senior Games is the largest qualified multi-sportevent for individuals aged 50 and over, who love to compete or even try a new activity such as power walking.Senior Games also take place at the local and state level across the country every year.

These events are important because they provide opportunities for people to stay active physically and mentally, compete with their peers and be part of a supportive community.The next National Senior Games will be in Des Moines, Iowa, July 24-August 4, 2025.It will be the first year were doing sports Tai Chi as a competition! Were also introducing eight other sports and events including Powerlifting, Basketball Shooting Skills and Disc Golf, for a total of 26 sports to choose from.Do any stories stick with you from your time with the Senior Games?Since Im a track guy, Junior Hurricane Hawkins comes to mind.

She set the world record for her age group (100 and older) in 100-meter race at the National Senior Games in 2017.And when I saw the womens 200- and 400-meter races in 2019 these ladies at age 50 were just amazing at their events.It brought me back they didnt look like they were that far off from their college days.How can someone get involved with the National Senior Games?To compete in most sports at the 2025 National Senior Games, the journey starts by qualifying at a State Senior Games in 2024.Id recommend someone pick a sport(s) they enjoy, check the qualification requirements at and find a State Senior Games to compete in this year (view a list here).

If they qualify, theyll then be able to register online for the National Senior Games and join us in Des Moines in 2025!There will also be open sports and events that dont require you to qualify, including Tai Chi, 1-Mile Road Race, and others.We also appreciate the volunteers.We know that from a general health standpoint, people who give and volunteer do better in their overall well-being than people who are not engaged in giving.So thats another aspect of the Senior Games that is health building even if you arent competing.How do you practice wellness in your life?I practice mindfulness.

I also do yoga and Tai Chi, walking, and the occasional jog.I enjoy the outdoors by hiking, and I play drums at church every other week.My dad will be 100 on July 4th.

His father lived until 102.One of my goals has always been to try to live to 100.Senior Planets motto is Aging with Attitude.What does that mean to you?From my viewpoint, its an attitude of aging well.

All of us are aging and I think one of the goals is to have the best health span that you can.Were all on a continuum.From the moment youre born, youre aging.YOUR TURNDid you ever compete in the Senior Games? Share your experience in the comments!Pam Hugi is Senior Planets Community and Advocacy Manager.

Based in Brooklyn, she is a contributing writer for this site.

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