CHESIRE, Conn. (WTNH) — The difference between just living and feeling alive and enjoying life is what a local nonprofit is doing to help people with long-term impairments from any injury or chronic condition get back to a meaningful life.

Exercise for Life aims for lifelong wellness.

“To see how much the program has really meant to individuals, more than I think either of us could have really imagined, that’s the eye-opening part,” said Kimberly Hopkins, co-founder of Exercise for Life.

Hopkins and Philip Silverio are both physical therapists at Gaylord Specialty Healthcare. But it’s what they do after hours that makes them warriors.

“The Exercise for Life program is a high-intensity exercise program for anyone with a long-term impairment from any injury or chronic condition,” Hopkins said.

“So people who have had a spinal cord injury, a stroke, a traumatic brain injury, those individuals are eligible for this class,” said Silverio, co-founder of Exercise for Life.

Operated out of Gaylord’s Cheshire location, this program is free.

“We want to be as accessible as possible both physically and financially. It runs two times a week, free to participants for about two hours each class,” Hopkins said.

Helping people live a meaningful life, Hopkins said, “What can I do to really live vs live your life? There is a big difference.”

Hopkins and Silverio have created a safe space for people to grow stronger, healthier, and truly exercise for life!

“A lot of gyms are not set up for individuals who need more adaptive equipment or medical guidance, so our goal was really to get people back to living. To see how far people have come and how much it has really helped, how many people it’s helped and it’s still growing, is fascinating.”

Learn more by visiting this link.