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May 4, 2018

Keeping the beat is therapeutic for residents of senior living communities

Residents of some senior living communities are benefitting physically and mentally from a simple activity that originated thousands of years ago. And they’re having loads of fun in the process.

“It’s a new activity for most people—it’s making noise,” says Jeff Kuhn, musician and drum circle instructor. Kuhn has taught residents of Country Meadows Retirement Communities how to strike djembe [JEM-bay] drums to achieve various sounds and rhythms. (A djembe is a goblet-shaped, African drum that is struck with the hands.)

But Kuhn acknowledges that a lot more is going on in a drum circle than making noise. He says that learning new rhythms and focusing on repeating them provides mental stimulation.

Rhythm as therapy can enhance enjoyment of senior living

That’s why Country Meadows’ Pathways Restorative Services™ program has integrated drum circles into its therapy for residents at some campuses. Participants can beat on drums, while others can shake sticks or rattle shakers. Typically, the group gets two complementary rhythms going at the same time.

Country Meadows is always trying to be ahead of the game, and there has been a lot of research and education on how therapeutic drum circles can be for any age. Incorporating the drum circles into Pathways works because it can help restore residents cognitively through their interacting with the drums, as rhythmic drumming is physically therapeutic as well.

Leaders of drum circles at active senior living communities have also found that they can induce fun and fellowship, decrease pain, increase self-esteem and relax tensions. The smiling faces and tapping feet of Country Meadows residents reveal that they truly enjoy the experience.

Pathways Restorative Services™ offers special support to Country Meadows residents

At Country Meadows, our Pathways Restorative Services™ provides short- and long-term assistance to people needing more support than traditional personal care. Whether someone is recovering from an injury or surgery, or living with a chronic condition, Pathways Restorative Services™ embraces the life-affirming philosophy of focusing on their personal abilities and reviving their skills and talents.

Pathways helps residents establish personalized plans to set achievable goals and maintain their independence. The desired outcome is that they can improve their performance of daily activities such as bathing, dressing, walking and more.

If you are looking for a retirement community in Pennsylvania or Maryland whether residing in an independent living community, an assisted living/personal care home or a memory support neighborhood, we hope you will visit Country Meadows, where you will find energetic residents engaged in musical fun and other activities every day. We invite you to tour any of our 11 Pennsylvania or Maryland retirement homes. Please contact us for information or to schedule a tour so that you can meet our caring staff and become familiar with our full range of senior living services.

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