FUNdamentals in FUNctional FITness
by Nikki Carrion, MA
FitXpress LLC
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Co-Owner; FitXpress
Nikki Carrion is co-owner of Fit Xpress
Consulting Services in Waterloo, IA.  
She has over 25 years of experience
in the field of health promotion and
says her passion for her work comes
from her desire to practice preventive
health and promote positive lifestyle
changes.  Although she works with a
wide variety of ages, from college
students to older adults, she says her
focus is on empowering older adults
to higher levels of functional fitness.   

Nikki has a graduate degree in
Community Health Education with an
emphasis in Gerontology from the
University of Northern Iowa.  She also
has a number of certifications
including balance training, chronic
disease self- management, exercise
for hip & knee replacements, group
exercise instruction, personal
training, yoga and pilates.


  • MA; Community Health
    Education.  University of
    Northern IA.  Emphasis in


  • Enhance Fitness Master
    Trainer ~ University of
    Washington, WA.
  • Chronic Disease Self-
    management Master Trainer
    ~ Stanford University, CA.
  • Balance Trainer ~ Cal State
    Fullerton, CA.
  • Personal Trainer / Fitness,
    Yoga & Pilates Instruction ~
    Nat'l Exercise Trainers

Nikki Carrion’s primary
passion and mission is to
empower older adults to
higher levels of functional
fitness.  Besides the Relax &
Breathe CEU module,
FitXpress has a series of
chair exercise DVDs as well
as a training module for
activity professionals.  
FitXpress methods are safe
and effective AND
demonstrate how to put the
FUN into FUNction!
For more information go to:
check out the product page.
Empower yourself with
or call 319-404-4219.  
Fall into Fitness

It’s that time of year when it’s common to hear the old phrase…fall into fitness.  As
activity professionals (APs) you may take that phrase a bit more literally than most and
be cringing right now as you simply read the word fall.  Those of you who have an
exercise program, and even those of you who are considering one, know that a primary
reason for having such a program is to reduce falls and/or to prevent them.  Maybe you
are in the preparation stages of a new exercise program right now…or maybe you want
to change your current program so as to bring in some new participants?  If so…you’ve
already considered the fact that many, if not most, of your facility’s resident/patients
(RPs) have health challenges and that there is a wide range of capabilities/needs to be
met among your RPs.  To top it off…you’re very aware that the motivational factor is yet
another issue to be taken into consideration.  How about the budget?  Yes…that’s often
an obstacle too.  The main point here is that introducing an exercise program, or trying
to introduce change to an existing program, is challenging and can be overwhelming to
say the least.  In order to be successful, a program needs to be safe, effective, and
FUN!  That’s right…FUN!!    If your program puts the FUN into FUNction…your RPs will
come back time-and-time again.   Some quick tips regarding safety and effectiveness
are as follows:
•        Get clearance from a health care provider (e.g. doctor, nurse, PT) for each
•        Be informed in terms of what constitutes a comprehensive plan for an effective
class; properly combining cardio, strength, flexibility, balance and breathing.
•         Understand the characteristics of a good exercise leader.
•        Know what older adults should avoid when exercising (e.g. lifting both feet up
simultaneously, extension of the neck, lifting weights above the head, doing
unsupported forward flexion, etc).
•        Know what exercises and/or muscles are most important for an RP’s physical
•        Realize how things like strength, flexibility, gait, center of gravity, awareness and
environment all fit into the balance equation.

If this sounds interesting, but a bit overwhelming, consider the new FitXpress training
module; Steps to Better Balance & Fall Prevention (SBBFP).  SBBFP will provide an AP
with all of the above information and much, much more.  The module is thorough and
concise, and is designed specifically for APs interested in either starting an exercise
program and/or changing up an existing program.  There are 14 disks; 6 audio-visual
training DVDs, 1 CD with a manual for download (includes 24 classroom handouts)
and 7 class-formatted DVDs that can be used in a variety of ways.  Best of all…our
pricing takes tight budgets into consideration!

Research shows exercise to be an elixir of sorts, serving to deter onset of many health
challenges and/or to improve associated symptoms.  Help your RPs to understand that
although they may not have control of a disease(s) that may afflict them…they do have
control of whether or not they choose to be active and improve the symptoms.  Take
action…empower your RPs by developing a safe, effective and FUN exercise program.  
Contact me (Nikki) at 1-800-481-7449 or send me an email; and I
will send you a FREE SBBFP overview DVD.  This 15-minute overview will allow you to
make an informed decision as to whether SBBFP is the right fit for you and those you
serve.   SBBFP empowers RPs to become stronger, more independent and recognize
improved quality of life.  Be healthy…be happy!  