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Senior Women’s Basketball Team Shares Secrets to Healthy Aging

admin - July 31, 2013

“Be active. Eat well. Love.”

That is the sound advice that Arlene Mayer, 82, of the New Mexico senior women’s basketball team, gives for aging gracefully. The feisty ladies of the New Mexico Cruisin’ Big Dogs came to Cleveland, OH this week to compete in the 2013 National Senior Games. We caught up with them to learn how they stay active and healthy and also why preventive health screenings are important to them.

The New Mexico Cruisin’ Big Dogs are Katherine Dolce, 89, Claire Hanson, 81, Barbara Loveless, 80, Arlene Mayer, 82, Ina Stewart, 81, and Mickey Sutton, 80. They share a competitive spirit and a love for basketball. Together, they’ve played basketball competitively for 15 years.

Meet the women of the New Mexico Cruising’ Big Dogs, who are all over 80 years old!


Stay Active to Stay Healthy

We initially thought they had found the fountain of youth in New Mexico, but there was a common, more realistic theme among the Big Dogs’ thoughts on their impressive physical shape: keep moving and eat healthy. Arlene and Ina stressed that the best way to stay active is to stay connected with other people and to do things with them that you find fun. Mickey added that walking is a great way to maintain your strength as you get older.

Watch the video below to get the secrets to aging straight from the Big Dogs:


Life Line Screening’s Preventive Health Screenings Help

Four of the six ladies have been screened by Life Line Screening. Katherine, who goes by “Kay,” has been screened three times since her first health screening, which showed some blockage in her carotid artery. Kay shares her results with her doctor and gets screened every year to find out if the blockage has worsened or not.

“I was glad I was able to catch it in time to do something about it,” Kay explained.

“We read about [Life Line Screening] and thought, well, we haven’t had those things checked. They don’t check those things at the doctor’s office, so we decided to get them all checked,” Mickey pointed out. “We were both as healthy as we thought we were. But you don’t always know,” she added. Her teammates agreed.

Their observations align with a problematic gap in our healthcare system regarding prevention in healthcare. If you are asymptomatic, meaning you are not sick yet and feel well, but have risk factors (such as age and family history), tests are often not covered by insurance and can be very costly. The ladies are happy to have tests from Life Line Screening available to them so they can take a proactive approach to their health.

In the video below, the Cruisin’ Big Dogs discuss the importance of health screenings:

The New Mexico Cruisin’ Big Dogs wrapped up the 2013 National Senior Games with 4 wins and 1 loss, earning them a silver medal in the games. While they don’t keep track of their overall record, they are confident they’ve had more wins than losses. But, most importantly, the ladies are making memories and having fun with great friends while staying active – a major win for their overall health.

For more photos of the Cruisin’ Big Dogs please visit our Facebook page.


1 Comment so far
  1. Laverne Nagel - August 9, 2013 at 1:46 pm

    You go ladies. I agree with you 100%. I just competed in my 6th National Senior Games in Cleveland at the age of 63 and our volleyball team took the bronze. You never loose your competitiveness and staying active and healthy helps you to continue to play. Our team Chicago Heat has a bronze, two silvers, and two gold medals. Long live the challenge.
    Vern Nagel

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