Mindfulness on the move

Oct 20, 2021

Each Wednesday morning at 10 a.m., a growing group of seniors gathers at the Middle School track for a walking group — even when they’re feeling sore or tired.

The group, led by volunteer Deborah Sandoli, starts each meeting with some time spent thinking about mindfulness, being in the moment, and being kind to themselves.

“Mindfulness is your mind being full of the moment,” explained Sandoli, a retired psychologist, wellness nurse and marathon trainer.

She said that part of mindfulness is about paying attention to one’s body without judging it, and accepting where one’s at on any given day.

“It’s really about teaching people to stay right where they’re at,” Sandoli said.

Most of the walkers aim to walk just a bit further each week. Sandoli said that’s the same strategy used by people training for marathons.

“It’s actually a socialization thing, as far as I’m concerned,” said walker Rose Murphy. She said she hadn’t known anyone in the group when the program began, but found everyone to be friendly.

Judy Peterson said that being part of a group has helped her stay accountable.

“Thinking about it at home does not work,” Peterson said. At home, she said, she’ll plan to go for a walk after completing this or that task: “Somehow, it never happens.”

Some women walk in pairs or trios, and those taking a break are quick to cheer passersby on.

“It’s just great because you’re with a bunch of women, walking and talking,” said Marylou Newman.

The program is set to meet weekly through Nov. 3.

The Council on Aging also offers a variety of other programs and activities, including chair volleyball, country line dancing, and tai chi. For more information, call 508-291-3130 or search for “Wareham Council on Aging” on Facebook.