Few brands survive 30 years and even fewer maintain an NPS score – which measures the likelihood that someone would recommend the program to a friend – that is significantly higher than many leading national retail brands. SilverSneakers, with an NPS score of 83, started when a daughter saw a gap in healthcare resources available to her ailing father.
Today, SilverSneakers is the nation’s leading fitness program for older adults, partnering with more than 70 health plans, making it one of the most trusted senior fitness programs in the country.
SilverSneakers was started by founder Mary Swanson in 1992. When her dad survived a heart attack, she understood the power of fitness to help him recover but was frustrated by the lack of exercise opportunities designed specifically for seniors and people living with chronic conditions. Mary started the SilverSneakers classic program, originally a chair-based fitness program, that grew to 15 locations in Phoenix and Tuscon Arizona by 1996.
Over the years, SilverSneakers grew through a combination of changes in Medicare, growth in health plan clients and a steady increase of fitness locations in the SilverSneakers network. In 2004, SilverSneakers Circuit launched as a second signature class and was offered at 1,000 network locations nationwide. That same year, SilverSneakers saw its health plan partnerships grow to 41 plans in 29 states – up from 15 plans in a dozen states. In 2006, SilverSneakers launched a yoga program and partnered with Medicare Advantage. Over the next two years, the organization expanded from 1,000 to more than 10,000 network locations.
Today, SilverSneakers is stronger than ever and the country’s most experienced provider of senior fitness programming. With 2 million SilverSneakers.com accounts, partnerships with Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement and group retiree plans have propelled the organization’s popularity. SilverSneakers takes very seriously the responsibility of providing excellent service for its members, clients and partners.
“Our 30th anniversary is a celebration of the many individuals and organizations who have contributed to the success of SilverSneakers over the past three decades,” said Richard Ashworth, president and CEO, Tivity Health. “Our commitment is to continue to build this brand and our expertise in a way that will provide new and innovative programs to support healthy aging well into the future.”
SilverSneakers has always been much more than a senior fitness program. It is a community that fosters wellness, purpose and social connection. Beyond SilverSneakers, the organization also has launched partnerships with GetSetUp, a virtual learning platform providing mental enrichment opportunities for seniors, and the Stitch social community for people 50 and over.