FLEMINGTON, NJ - Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic, unpredictable disease of the central nervous system that affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide, according to the National MS Society of New Jersey.

Now, the Hunterdon County YMCA is offering a wellness program for adults that have been diagnosed with the disease. The program is free and open to the public; YMCA membership is not required.

The program, One Step for MS, was designed in partnership with the state Society and is led by a trained and certified instructor. The goal of One Step is to enhance an individual’s overall quality of life.

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Symptoms of the disease often include loss of balance, extreme fatigue and difficulty with memory and concentration. Numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of exercise for people with MS. Those benefits can include improvement in strength, cognitive function and mood enhancement.

One Step is a 16-week, 32 session program. Classes will meet on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. and Thursdays at 1:45 p.m. at the Deer Path Branch of the YMCA, 144 West Woodschurch Road in Readington. Use  Flemington for GPS. 

Tuesday is an aquatic session which will be held in the Deer Path pool and Thursday will be a land session. Participants are encouraged to attend both sessions, but are welcome to attend either. The first session will be held Tuesday, Sept. 10.

The program will be led by Beth Carpenter, an ACE and MS Society Certified Trainer. 

“This class welcomes people where they are, whether they have a recent diagnosis or they have been living with MS for some time,” Carpenter said. “The program is designed to accommodate various levels of capability and can be adjusted as changes occur. It is a great program and I hope people will give it a try.”

To register, visit the Welcome Center at the Deer Path branch or the Round Valley branch on Route 22 in Clinton Township; or call 908-782-1030. For more information, call Carpenter at 908-483-4937 or send email to bcarpenter@hcymca.org.

The Hunterdon YMCA is one of five YMCA’s in the state that are offering this program. The Hunterdon YMCA is offering One Step as part of its commitment to youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.

The Y strives to make Hunterdon County a healthier community by providing programs that are open to the community and promote well-being. For more information about the Hunterdon County YMCA, visit https://www.hcymca.org/.