, Muskogee, OK

January 5, 2013

Workshop to help those with chronic conditions

By Wendy Burton
Phoenix Staff Writer

— Daily living can be a challenge for those with chronic illnesses, said Martha Alford, health educator for the Muskogee County Health Department.

Learning to cope with disabilities, ill health, frustrations and more is important to those who suffer from such conditions as diabetes, asthma, high blood pressure and much more, she said.

So the public is invited to attend the first Living Longer, Living Stronger with Chronic Conditions workshop of 2013 and learn to improve their lot in life.

The workshop is a set of six classes held from 1-3:30 p.m. each Thursday from Jan. 24 to Feb. 28 at the Muskogee Swim and Fitness Center.

Such workshops are held twice a year, but only 18 spots are open for attendees so pre-registration is necessary, Alford said.

“It’s really packed with wonderful information,” Alford said. “It’s fun to teach and we’ve had some great testimonials from people who have taken the workshop.”

The workshop is intended for either those over 60 or those living with chronic conditions.

Instructors Brooke Hall and Alford will share how to understand and manage common symptoms such as pain and depression.

Healthy eating, exercising and relaxation techniques are also covered.

The Stanford University developed, self-help curriculum is free, Alford said, and includes a copy of the book “Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions.”

Alford said the workshop is about both physical and nutritional health, and sets out to help attendees get into good habits.

“There’s lessons in pain management techniques, self-talk to manage depression, lessons on how to talk to your doctor, how to exercise and increase flexibility and strength and more,” Alford said. “Plus participants receive a free pass to the Swim and Fitness center for every class they attend as an incentive.”

Reach Wendy Burton at (918) 684-2926 or

If you go

WHAT: Free six-week session on “Living Longer, Living Stronger with Chronic Conditions.”

WHEN: 1-3:30 p.m. Jan. 24 and 31, Feb. 7, 14, 21 and 28.

WHERE: Muskogee Swim and Fitness Center, 566 N. Sixth St.

REGISTRATION: Brooke Hall, (918) 681-4733 or Martha Alford (918) 683-0321.