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)

宜蘭縣員山鄉一群平均年齡逾七十五歲的阿公阿嬤,組成「員山鄉認真打拚宜蘭隊」,經過兩個多月排練,參加國民健康署舉辦的全國老人健康促進競賽,勇奪東區組冠軍,十月七日將到台北爭取全國冠軍,尋求二連霸。

這支冠軍隊伍班底,主要來自宜蘭縣的「不老元極舞團隊」,成員十多年來在員山公園一起做運動,培養出深厚感情及默契,也吸引愈來愈多長者一同加入;這群充滿活力的阿公阿嬤,前年首度組隊報名參加全國老人健康促進競賽,就獲得不錯成績,去年更是勇奪全國冠軍。

今年第三次參加競賽,員山鄉長江永和隨團擔任啦啦隊長,阿公阿嬤不負所望,再度脫穎而出榮獲東區冠軍,將代表東區參加全國決賽。團員之一員山鄉衛促會理事長游振孝說,兩個多月來,每天用心練習,沒有人喊累請假,隊員保持高昂士氣,是贏得東區冠軍關鍵。

其中,最年長的是高齡九十五歲、前員山鄉長黃評譿母親黃曾阿娥;下個月在台北的全國決賽,會有一位一百零二歲的人瑞一同參加;黃曾阿娥笑著說,跟著大家一起運動跳舞真的很好,身體健康又保持心情快樂。

(自由時報記者胡健森)