Creative Aging in the News

Is Dancing the Kale of Exercise?

Marilyn Friedman, New York Times  |  April 30, 2019

Research shows that dance offers a wealth of anti-aging benefits. It’s also fun. In a packed ballroom, a dapper man in a silver tuxedo swing dances with a young woman to Count Basie’s jazz classic “Shiny Stockings.” A parade of 93 other women patiently wait their turn. The man smiles wide, playfully wiggling his hips at the end of the eight count beat. He’s surprisingly spry for a 94-year-old…

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The U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory on the Healing Effects of Social Connection and Community

Our Epidemic of Loneliness and Isolation calls attention to the importance of social connection for the health and well-being of individuals and communities and the significant consequences when social connection is lacking.  The Surgeon General’s Advisory presents recommendations for institutions that shape our day-to-day lives based on decades of scientific research.

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Implementing Hybrid Programs: Considerations and Best Practices for the Aging Network

Implementing Hybrid Programs was developed in partnership with Older Adults Technology Services (OATS) from AARP that provides key considerations, tips, and best practices to help organizations considering and implementing hybrid programs. This manual also benefits both teaching artists and participants.

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Aging Matters Radio Broadcast

Aging Matters is a weekly interview program on Arlington’s community radio station WERA 96.7 – LP FM featuring individuals with expertise about a broad array of aging related topics. Every Tuesday from 2:00 to 3:00 pm, host Cheryl Beversdorf interviews experts on timely topics affecting the lives of older adults and their loved ones. Each week her guests talk about subjects both informative and entertaining and help educate listeners about living better and longer.

Listen HereAFTA Director & CEO's Interview

Arts & Aging Toolkit

Creativity Matters: The Arts & Aging Toolkit explains why and how older adults benefit from participating in professionally conducted community arts programs. It offers detailed advice and examples on program design, implementation and evaluation and is available, free and online, at

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Bringing the Arts to Life

Bringing the Arts to Life: A Guide to the Arts and Long-Term Care identifies current model programs in long-term care communities that demonstrate how the arts play a key role in moving toward person-centered care by engaging older adults in the artistic process.

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Arts and Aging: Building the Science

Recent and ongoing research suggests exciting possibilities for the therapeutic use of art to improve the health and well-being of older adults. As this population grows in number and as a proportion of all Americans, it will experience dramatic increases in the number of people with aging-related health conditions, including cognitive decline and dementia. Given the arts’ potential to treat, prevent, or ameliorate those conditions, additional research is needed to clarify the relationship between the arts and the health and well-being of older adults.

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Impact on Arts Participation on Health Outcomes for Older Adults

Impact on Arts Participation on Health Outcomes for Older Adults examines various research on creative aging programs. Its research concludes that older adults who participate in arts programs experience positive effects in cognitive functioning, mental health, physical health, and general well-being.

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Creativity Matters: Arts and Aging in America

Americans for the Arts Creativity Matters: Arts and Aging in America provides fundamental information on integrating the arts with the elderly. It details how the aging benefit from engaging in creativity and offers examples of organizations and pioneers in creative aging programming in the United States.

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Arts in Medicine

Arts in Medicine maps the past, present, and future of arts programming in medicine. This literature review discusses how recipients, staff, and families benefit from participating in the arts and proposes how to improve such programming to increase the arts’ presence in modern medicine.

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The Impact of Professionally Conducted Cultural Programs on the Physical Health, Mental Health, and Social Functioning of Older Adults

The aim of this study was to measure the impact of professionally conducted community-based cultural programs on the physical health, mental health, and social activities of individuals aged 65 and older.

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