Meet Robert Brown, Resident Services Coordinator at The Legacy at South Plains, an Assisted Living Community in Lubbock, TX. Robert has been with the community since they opened in July of 2017. Within 7 months the community successfully filled to capacity and generated a waiting list. One of the biggest reasons their community is in such high demand is their emphasis on wellness and the results their residents experience. Here's how they've decided to make wellness the center of their community and the driving force behind their sales and marketing program.
Q: The first year has been quite successful for your community! How were you able to fill up so quickly?
A: It's been amazing. Within just 7 months of opening our doors, all of the assisted living units were full and we were generating a waiting list. And, honestly, I can understand why. This is a great place to live largely because we do so much to support the health and wellness of our residents.
One of the reasons I'm so passionate about fitness, especially as we get older, is because of how much it affects our daily life. While in school I interned at a physical therapy clinic and noticed many of the seniors in therapy weren't injured because they were so active. They were injured because they were so inactive.
As an assisted living community, many residents come to us with limited mobility and independence. These are things that have a big impact on their quality of life. Our goal is to do everything we can to help residents achieve the highest possible level of wellness. Over the past year, our residents have, on average, increased in strength by 286%. And, several times now I have watched as a wheelchair user has been able to leave their wheelchair behind and move around the community with a walker within a few months of being here.
Q: That's incredible! How does your sales and marketing team showcase your community's emphasis on wellness and use it as a selling point?
A: When someone is interested in our community, we take them on a tour. A lot of the tour time is spent in our fitness center. Our marketing director is set up on the HUR SmartTouch system, so she can scan her wristband and demonstrate how the HUR machines work. We schedule tours during the times of the day when we know there will be residents in the gym working out so our guests can see that we are an active community. It's important for them to know that if they join our community, they won't be alone. There will be others participating in activities with them.
The HUR equipment itself is a huge selling point. When prospective residents see it in action, they immediately understand its value. It's also important that the fitness center is on campus. Potential residents don't like the idea of having to arrange transportation to an off-campus facility every time they want to exercise or attend a physical therapy session.
"I love the HUR equipment because I have seen firsthand how it strengthens our resident's bodies and reduces their risk of falling. When I tour potential residents and their families, having a well-equipped wellness center that produces amazing results makes a big difference and helps set our community apart from the competition."
~ Laurie Bandy, Community Relations Director, The Legacy at South Plains
Q: The participation levels within your community are quite impressive. What do you do to encourage residents to get into the fitness center on a regular basis?
A: Our residents know our fitness center has regularly scheduled hours when it will be staffed with people to assist them. For those residents who want assistance, this motivates them to make sure they come during those hours. We also pay attention to the data generated through the HUR SmartTouch system and if we notice someone hasn't been in or is training less than they used to, we make it a priority to find out why. And, of course, once they've been working out regularly for a while, they genuinely feel better and are more active, which motives them to continue.
But, one of the things that motivate them the most is the "Legacy Loot". Legacy Loot is fake money that we hand out to residents as a reward for participating in all kinds of activities - including visits to the fitness center. At the end of each month, they can spend their Loot in an on-campus store or at an auction. You can't believe how motivating this is to many of our residents. They get totally competitive with it, throwing their money down on the table before an auction to show off how much they earned.
Also, our corporate office sends out an email every month with gym participation data from all the Legacy communities. Our entire community is invested in trying to beat out everyone else and be the winning community each month. It's a little fun, healthy competition that boosts motivation.
"The HUR Equipment has made me a lot stronger from the time I moved in. I can walk now and I owe it to the fitness center. My overall health has improved as well."
~ Clyde, Resident at The Legacy at South Plains
Q: Do you have any success stories you can share with our readers?
A: Absolutely! One of our residents was a wheelchair user when he first moved in. He didn't want to do his Physical Therapy and certainly didn't want to exercise. He didn't even want to come out of his room. Thanks to his doctor's urging and the support and encouragement of our staff, we were able to get him into the gym several times a week.
He kept at it, and the difference is remarkable. He's walking with a walker and is one of the most active members of the community! Rather than keeping to himself and hiding in his room, he's out and about, participating in all sorts of things. And, he's so much happier!
Another resident couldn't stand up without assistance when she moved in. Now she can. It's "little" things like that - walking and getting in and out of a chair - that you realize aren't little things at all.