A prescription-based exercise program for those transitioning to independent exercise

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Proven Results

Proven Results

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PowerEx is a physician referred, semi-supervised exercise program for individuals looking to establish a healthier lifestyle through exercise. We utilize a hybrid approach combining one-on-one sessions with your exercise physiologist and independent workout sessions to help you feel comfortable and confident with your exercise program.

Why PowerEx? What Makes Our Program Different?

Have you ever joined a gym and on your first day walked around not knowing what to do or, if you have a disability, what you CAN do safely? This program is designed to assist those with medical conditions requiring special consideration or anyone who doesn’t know where to start develop an exercise program they can be successful with. Our exercise physiologists will conduct a health and fitness assessment and design an individualized progressive exercise program specific to your needs, goals, and ability level.


Is PowerEx Right for You?

PowerEx candidates and participants have a wide range of diagnoses and ability levels. Our exercise physiologists are specialized in developing exercise programs to improve fitness for a wide range of medical conditions. They design programs for participants with conditions including, but not limited to:

  • Cardiovascular
  • Neurological
  • Orthopedic
  • Metabolic
  • General weakness and deconditioning

Program Options

PowerEx has two different program options, Standard and Elite, to best suit the needs and ability levels of our participants. Placement into either program is based upon an evaluation and recommendation by an exercise physiologist.

Program requirements for either option:

  • Signed PowerEx referral form by your physician
  • Attendance to our fitness center twice a week on your own for independent workouts for 3-month program duration
  • Attendance to all one-on-one sessions with your exercise physiologist
  • Compliance with all pool, fitness, and safety policies and procedures

1. PowerEx Standard:

  • Health/medical history evaluation and fitness assessment
  • Individualized exercise program specific to your goals and abilities
  • 6 half-hour one-on-one sessions with an exercise physiologist
  • 3-month membership to Sheltering Arms fitness center and pool
  • Ability to complete your exercise program independently


2. PowerEx Elite:

  • Health/medical history evaluation and fitness assessment
  • Individualized exercise program specific to your goals and abilities
  • 12 half-hour one-on-one session with an exercise physiologist
  • 3-month membership to Sheltering Arms fitness center and pool
  • Ability to complete your exercise program with minimal assistance from a caregiver

Request an Appointment for PowerEx

After we have recieved your referral form, it is as simple as filling out the form below or calling 804-764-5275 and scheduling your first visit!

*Make sure that we have received a referral from your physician before making an appointment. You or your physician can download the form below.


PowerEx Program Results & Outcomes

Participants who complete the PowerEx program report improvements in cardiovascular endurance, balance, strength, quality of life, and mobility. See some of those improvements in our outcome measures below.

Six-Minute Walk Test

A six-minute walk test is a tool used to measure cardiovascular endurance by measuring the distance a participant can walk in six minutes. On average, our participants increased their distance traveled by 135.25 feet (Figure 1), signifying an increase in cardiovascular endurance over the 12-week program.

Six-Minute Walk Test Pre-Post Results
Figure 1. Six-Minute Walk Test Pre-Post Results

Timed Up and Go (TUG)

The TUG test is used to assess mobility in our participants. You start seated in a chair, must stand from the chair and walk 10 feet, turn around, and sit back down. This is a timed test – a shorter time to complete signifies increased mobility level. As seen in Figure 2, our participants decreased the time to complete the TUG test by 7.82 seconds on average during the 12-week program.

Timed Up and Go (TUG) Test
Figure 2. TUG Pre-Post Results

These are just a sampling of the many fitness outcomes measures we track throughout the program. All testing is conducted during an initial evaluation and an exit evaluation at the end of the 12-week program.


PowerEx Locations

Bon Air Center

Sheltering Arms Bon Air Center

206 Twinridge Lane
Richmond, VA 23235

General inquiries:
Fitness / Pool:

Abbey Colley, MS, ACSM EP
PowerEx™ Exercise Physiologist

ACSM Certified Exercise Physiologist at Bon Air

Abbey Colley, MS, ACSM EPAbbey is the PowerEx program lead and has been with Sheltering Arms since February 2019. She received her master’s degree in exercise physiology from Virginia Commonwealth University after completing her bachelor’s degree in health sciences at James Madison University. Abbey is a certified exercise physiologist through the American College of Sports Medicine and has been working with individuals with chronic disease and special populations for several years.

Her specialties and areas of interest include fall prevention and improving health conditions and quality of life in those with cardiac conditions, stroke survivors, those with orthopedic conditions, and general deconditioning. When not at work, Abbey enjoys running with her dog, strength training, doing anything on or near the water, gardening, and cooking with her husband.

Reynolds Center

Reynolds Location Sheltering Arms Rehabilitation

6627 W. Broad Street
Richmond, VA 23230

General inquiries:

Niki Johnson MS, ACSM EP
PowerEx™ Exercise Physiologist at Reynolds Center
ACSM Certified Exercise Physiologist

Niki Johnson MS, ACSM EP

Niki has been working with clients in the PoweEx program at Sheltering Arms since 2015. As an American College of Sports Medicine Certified Exercise Physiologist, she has been training individuals with physical challenges and chronic conditions for more than 17 years. She believes educating clients to mindfully connect with their physical movements is the key to empowering each person to reach his or her full functional potential. In her free time, Niki enjoys outdoor activities such as kayaking on the river and competing in orienteering races.