Tod, a 65-year-old retiree in Athens, Georgia, was first introduced to GetSetUp through his health insurance plan, Aetna’s SilverSneakers program. Through his health plan's partnership, he could take classes on GetSetUp, a growing learning and discovery platform for older adults, free of charge.
He had tried a Tai Chi class at his local gym, but due to his tinnitus, a constant ringing in the ears that can be quite distracting, he found taking classes online more comfortable.
“GetSetUp helps provide relief from my tinnitus. One of the first classes I took on GetSetUp was Tai Chi. I needed that type of relaxing exercise."
Tai Chi with Ty Arnold
One of Tod's favorite instructors on GetSetUp is Ty Arnold, who teaches Tai Chi classes. According to Tod, Ty has a way of making everyone feel comfortable and at ease. He allows people to talk if they want to and is always available to answer questions.
Tod likes that he can see himself doing the movements in Ty's class, which helps him ensure that he is doing them correctly. Ty is also very understanding and encourages people to do the movements in their way, which Tod appreciates.
“Ty isn’t a stickler for right or wrong. He’s very good at telling people to do it their way. I frequently see I’m doing things differently from him, and he has reassured me personally and the class as a whole. He says, ‘You do what you feel is right for you.’ He reminds us that he is there to guide us through the movements but not force us to do anything, and I like that.”
Favorite Classes and Instructors
Tod quickly found that GetSetUp offered much more than Tai Chi classes. With GetSetUp, he has taken classes on various topics, including Bernadette positive thinking and mental wellness classes and other relaxing exercise classes. He finds that knowledgeable and caring instructors teach the classes.
He particularly enjoys classes by Jane Stewart, who he says does excellent classes. Tod says that there are so many classes on GetSetUp that he always finds something new to try. He likes that he can easily see when a class is offered and fit it into his schedule.
According to Tod, the instructors on GetSetUp have a "good way of making everyone feel comfortable," which has been vital for him as a learner.
He likes that he can talk if he wants and feels comfortable in the classes.
Dealing with Tinnitus
Tod suffers from tinnitus, which can be quite distracting at times. However, he has found ways to deal with it, including using a sound machine and having the TV at a 15% lower volume to match his tinnitus. He also has special hearing aids that he uses to manage his tinnitus. These hearing aids are designed for people with tinnitus and offer sound waves and other features that help.. Plus, he can control his hearing aids directly from his phone.
“Hearing aids are really good. Most people who get them think they are only for hearing problems, but when I first got them, it was for tinnitus. This is my fifth pair now, and they really help.”
While Tod has always had tinnitus, it got particularly bad after he caught COVID. He and his husband took an Alaskan cruise to celebrate the lift in restrictions from the pandemic, but unfortunately, they caught COVID during the air travel. A side effect of COVID might have been his tinnitus flaring up.
“I’m really glad I'm retired. I don’t think I could deal with work with my tinnitus at this level.”
According to Tod, one of the things that helps him deal with his tinnitus is taking classes on GetSetUp. He likes the fact that he can interact with other people and that the platform provides a distraction from his tinnitus.
Tod also likes that he can take classes from the comfort of his bed using his iPad. He appreciates being able to take classes when he's available rather than only having a single scheduled class option.
“Tinnitus is always there. It flares up off and on. Mine is now up all the time. Hopefully, I’ll be able to keep doing my GetSetUp classes. The classes make me feel better because they allow me opportunities to take care of myself outside of the whole hearing aspect.”
Interacting with the Platform
Tod says that he always goes into the Zoom room when he takes classes on GetSetUp. He likes the fact that he can easily click on chat or unmute and ask a question. Plus, when he’s in classes like Tai Chi, he can turn his video on so that people can see what he's doing.
GetSetUp's high-quality video and audio quality make it easy for Tod to follow along with the classes. Plus, with options for shorter classes of 20 minutes or 30 minutes, he can easily fit classes into his schedule and doesn't get too fatigued.
“I left the house yesterday for the first time in a while and was concerned about how I would interact with another person because of my tinnitus. I didn’t have any problems, and it’s nice to know I’m starting to be able to interact again with the world around me in addition to online classes.”
Tod's experience with GetSetUp has been a positive one. He has found many classes that he enjoys that offer soothing options for exercise and meditation.
“GetSetUp is helping me to feel more together.”