National health awareness competition for seniors 老人健康賽 員山隊東區摘冠

Wed, Sep 25, 2013 - Page 11

A group of seniors from Yilan County’s Yuanshan Township whose average age exceeds 75 has formed the Yuanshan Township Winning for Yilan Team, which after more than two months of practice won first place in the eastern division of the national health awareness contest held by the Ministry of Health and Welfare. The group will be contending in Taipei on Oct. 7 for the national championship title in hopes of securing a second consecutive win.

The majority of the team’s members come from Yilan County’s Yuanji Dance Troupe for Youthful Seniors, which for over a decade has been exercising at Yuanshan Park, nurturing a strong team spirit and attracting an increasing number of seniors to join the group. This group of seniors, so full of vitality, performed quite well the first time that they participated in the national health awareness competition for seniors two years ago, and became the national champions last year.

Competing in the competition for the third time this year, Yuanshan Township Mayor Chiang Yung-ho joined the group at the contest as head cheerleader, and living up to everyone’s expectations, the team won first place in the eastern division and will go on to represent the east in the finals. One of the team’s members, Yu Chen-hsiao, president of the Yuanshan Health Promotion Association, says that for more than two months the team practiced every day without anyone complaining about being tired or missing a day of practice, and that the team members held their head’s high and maintained strong morale to become the top team in the eastern division.

The oldest member on the team is 95 years old — former Yuanshan Township mayor Huang Ping-hui’s mother Huang Tseng A-er. One member who is 102 years old will join the group for the finals in Taipei next month. Huang Tseng says, with a smile on her face, that being able to exercise and dance with everyone keeps her healthy and happy.

(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)