Samantha Brady Talks Social Isolation, Driver Safety at Boston Bridge

Samantha Brady Talks Social Isolation, Driver Safety at Boston Bridge

AgeLab Research Specialist Samantha Brady presented results from research on driver safety, exercise, and well-being among older adults at the April Boston Bridge meeting.

Boston Bridge is an organization that brings together Boston-area professionals in the field of aging to exchange knowledge, foster networking and mentoring relationships, and encourage career growth. Boston Bridge holds monthly meetings on the MIT campus, with the space provided through the MIT AgeLab.

Ms. Brady provided an overview of the AgeLab’s work around driver safety and well-being and a summary of a recent AgeLab study examining the effect of SilverSneakers membership on social isolation and loneliness. SilverSneakers is a national fitness program that provides free gym memberships and group exercise classes to older adults with certain Medicare Advantage plans.

The study, sponsored by Tivity Health, examined interrelationships between a number of different variables that might be influenced by SilverSneakers membership, including physical activity, social isolation, loneliness, and health.

Results from the research indicated that SilverSneakers members, controlling for physical activity levels and other demographic factors, experienced less social isolation, less loneliness, and better overall physical health compared with non-members.