Healthy Lifestyle Workshops

The following programs are available in New York and have been shown to be effective in helping people with arthritis manage their symptoms. Learn more about how you can take charge of your health!

Physical Activity

NYS Physical Activity Programs for Arthritis: At a Glance

This decision aid can help you decide which physical activity program is best for you. The chart describes community-based and online physical activity programs for arthritis available in New York State. It includes information about each of the programs' target audiences, benefits, and content.

Walk With Ease (WWE)

Walk With Ease is a program for people with arthritis and other ongoing health problems. You'll learn how to start walking safely and stick with it. If you use a device like a cane or a walker to help you get around, you can still participate in the program.

Walk With Ease can be done as a group program. A group of up to 15 people meets three times a week for six weeks. Sessions include a brief education discussion, warm-up and cool-down exercises, and a 10 to 35-minute walk at your own pace.

If you are interested in attending or offering the group WWE program, contact the Alliance of New York State YMCAs at 518-462-8241 or email phughes@ymcanys.org.

Self-Directed Walk With Ease

Walk With Ease can also be done as a self-directed program. You do the activities and exercises on your own using the Walk With Ease guidebook and walking journal. Walk three times a week, working up to at least 30 minutes per session for 6 weeks.

To learn more about the self-directed program and how to receive a free Walk With Ease guidebook, visit Walk With Ease.

Enhance®Fitness (EF)

EnhanceFitness is a low-cost, evidence-based group exercise program. It helps older adults at all fitness levels become more active, energized, and empowered to live independent lives. The program is appropriate for those with and without arthritis.

EF program components include:

  • A certified instructor with special training in bringing out the physical best from older adults.
  • A 5-minute warm-up to get the blood flowing to the muscles.
  • A 20-minute aerobic workout that gets participants moving, or a walking workout to lively music that the class chooses.
  • A 5-minute cool-down.
  • A 20-minute strength training workout with soft ankle and wrist weights up to 20 pounds.
  • A 10-minute stretching workout to keep the muscles flexible.
  • Balance exercises throughout the class.
  • Lots of opportunities for participants to make new friends.

If you are interested in attending or offering an EnhanceFitness program, contact the Alliance of New York State YMCAs at 518-462-8241 or phughes@ymcanys.org.

Learn more about EnhanceFitness efforts in New York State!

Check out the video storybook to learn more about EnhanceFitness efforts in New York State!

Self-Management

Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP)

The CDSMP is a six-week, interactive, peer-support program designed by Stanford University. Workshops meet once a week for 2½ hours in convenient community settings, such as libraries, senior centers, churches, and hospitals. The small-groups are facilitated by a pair of leaders - one or both who are non-health professionals living with a chronic disease. The program is designed to help people learn techniques and strategies for the day-to-day management of ongoing health conditions. People with different chronic conditions and/or disabilities attend together. The CDSMP focuses on issues common to people with a variety of health conditions. Participants develop skills through action planning and feedback, behavior modeling, problem solving techniques, and decision making. Caregivers are welcome to attend.

CDSMP topics include:

  • Appropriate use of medications.
  • Healthy eating and proper nutrition.
  • Managing sleep and fatigue.
  • Safe and effective stretching and strengthening exercise.
  • Effective communication with friends, family, and health care professionals.

Tomando Control de su Salud (Spanish Chronic Disease Self-Management Program)

Tomando Control de su Salud is a self-management education program developed for Spanish speaking people with chronic health conditions. It is not a translation of the CDSMP but was developed separately. Topics covered are similar but are presented in culturally responsive ways and delivered entirely in Spanish.

Tomando Control de su Salud topics include:

  • Techniques to handle problems associated with chronic disease.
  • Benefits of an active lifestyle.
  • Appropriate medication use.
  • Effective communication with friends, family, and health care professionals.
  • Nutrition for health.

If you are interested in attending or offering the programs described above, please call the New York State Arthritis Program at 518-408-5142, or email EBSMP@health.ny.gov

Additional Recommended Programs

In addition to the programs being promoted by the New York State Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also recommends these programs to help you manage your arthritis:

Physical Activity

Self-Management