The 73-year-old girl from San Angelo is dedicated to holding alive a wholesome life

Posted: May 18, 2021 / 9:33 PM CDTUpdated: May 18, 2021 / 9:33 a.m. CDT

San Angelo, Texas – A woman keeps a healthy life alive in the San Angelo Baptist Retirement Community. Joan Countess is 73 years old and has osteoporosis, but instead of stopping Joan, it motivates her to line dance a group of older women.

“We know we need to exercise, so why not have fun with it,” said Joan Countess resident of the Baptist Retirement Community.

A group of ten ladies dance for their health in the Baptist Retirement Community, and out of a handful of classes they offer, 73-year-old Joan Countess is the only resident running her own exercise class, and she says it’s moving key.

“We have to keep moving as we get older, and that is the way to do it,” said the Countess.

Line dancing has been an important part of Joan’s life for over 20 years and now she shares line dancing with others with a 45 minute class with no breaks in between. For the dancers it is more than just a physical exercise, it is also an exercise for the mind.

“We don’t concentrate so much on remembering the exact steps. We just know that we have to move and we remember what we can,” said the Countess.

Erin Kelly, director of marketing at the Baptist Retirement Community, saw that patients have a lot to do with their bodies through surgery, and she tells us that classes like Joans are vital.

“It increases blood flow and helps minimize injury and wear and tear as the body ages,” said Erin Kelly, director of marketing for the Baptist Retirement Community. “It will help”

The Countess has osteoporosis and her line dance class helps her and the other participating ladies.

“Many of our ladies here have arthritis, I personally have osteoporosis, and this is the best exercise I can do for my osteoporosis,” said the Countess.

Joan’s class gets the body moving, but it also touches the heart. Erin Kelly loves it when residents take control of their lives so positively.

“This is really nice to see and we really encourage our residents, if they have these talents or gifts, to really try and bring them to others,” said Kelly.

While the class is still new, Joan enjoys her group of line dancers.

“They are all good and have been doing this for two months and I think they are a great group of ladies,” said the Countess.

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