Ted Lasso Inspires Canadian Seniors to “Believe”


From ‘Believe’ to biscuits, seniors will be channelling their inner “Ted Lasso” during an inspiring week of safely distanced playfulness.

“Because of the on-going pandemic restrictions, the 12th annual Senior Games have been postponed”, says Hannah Silver, Vice President of Health and Wellness. “We decided to help residents shift their focus to delight by creating a full week of fun programming that includes exercises, games, and of course, Ted Lasso.”

The aim of the event, which kicks off on January 24th, 2022 at All Seniors Care retirement residences across the country, is to generate a sense of connection and flow through playfulness.

Who is Ted Lasso?

The antithesis of the challenges endured during the pandemic, Ted Lasso, came at a time when we needed it most.

A heartwarming American sitcom, Ted Lasso tells the story of a kind and well-intentioned football coach who crosses the Atlantic Ocean to manage a struggling English soccer team – despite a total lack of experience with the sport. Equipped only with his motto: “Believe, the character played by Jason Sudeikis imparts some pearls of wisdom that are applicable on and off-field.

The script is filled with quirky humor, British innuendos, and even a Canadian connection, but what makes Ted Lasso sparkle are flashes of advice along the way, like be a goldfish.

Be Like a Goldfish

In response to ongoing public health advisories, the senior communities – who have spent the last few months training for the Games – came up with a clever pivot that tackles pandemic fatigue: “Be Like a Goldfish”

In the Lasso world, the secret to success means not allowing the challenges or judgements – or pandemics –  define us. Rather, it’s moving on quickly and finding comfort in the fishbowl of happiness we create for ourselves. Don’t dwell on it, move forward and live in the present.

The Spirit Week Event

Senior men playing shuffleboard at a retirement residence“Most of the time, change is a good thing…”, says Ted.  “Doing whatever you have to, so that everyone in your life can move forward with theirs.”

With activities designed to maintain the health and wellbeing of mind, body, and spirit, the new Spirit Week line-up has something for everyone: safely distance exercise classes, crafts that can be done as a group or independently, and Lasso-inspired snacks. Seniors will also try their had at a different sporting activity each day. All while wearing inspirational t-shirts or their favourite team jerseys.

Sample calendar:

10:00 – Zumba & Ted’s Breathing Technique

10:30 – Coffee & Muffins

10:45 – Homemade Valentine’s

2:00 – Ted Lasso Program #1

2:45 – Ted Lasso Snack: Biscuits with the Boss

3:30 – Dart Tournament


What is the “Ted Lasso” Breathing Technique?

In season two of the series, a sports psychologist teaches Ted a breathing technique that real-life Dr. Andrew Weil promotes as a “natural tranquilizer.” Weil prescribes the 4-7-8 breath cycle to all his patients as a way to de-stress.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Breathe in through your nose to a count of four, hold your breath for a count of seven, and blow air out forcibly through your mouth to a count of eight.
  • Repeat four 4-7-8 breath cycles twice a day (or more if you enjoy it).

The Benefits of Staying Active and Engaged

Group of seniors socializing at a tableStaying active and engaged in retirement living centres hinges on providing a wide variety of activities.  To accommodate the different interests and abilities of our residents, we have included activities that cover all the bases (not a soccer metaphor, but close enough).

1. Physical Health

Having a close network of friends is strongly linked to positive physical health outcomes.  In addition to lower blood pressure, stronger immunity, and reduced stress, having positive social connections can also lower the risk of cognitive decline and may even help people live longer.

2. Positive Emotions

Having fun and staying active is at the core of Spirit Week!  Engaging older adults in meaningful activity generates positive feelings. Painting, music, and playing trivia games are some therapeutic recreation activities that can give seniors a sense of purpose while eliminating stress.

3. Cognitive Vitality

Participating in a variety of both physical and cognitive exercises like those included in our Ted Lasso event is important for brain health. It helps form new pathways within our neural system that reduce the impact of dementia.

4. Social Connectivity

Attending national events counteracts the negative impact of pandemic isolation and promotes increased self-esteem and motivation. At the same time, it builds a sense of community, which is linked to  increased vitality in the elderly.

5. Strength & Mobility

Maintaining physical fitness is important for all older adults, and exercise is the best way to improve both strength and mobility.

Our Health and Wellness staff are experts at keeping seniors moving!  From games like bocce ball to seated yoga or tai chi, to national events like this one or the Going the Distance: ASC international Bike Tour there are always a variety of physical activities to choose from.

As ParticipACTION says, “being active isn’t just a passing trend or fad – it’s a scientifically proven method to strengthen your body, mind and social connections.” You just have to believe.

“I believe in hope. I believe in BELIEVE.”

Believe is a message driven home by Ted. In fact, in the first episode he hangs a crooked sign above his office door sporting the single word. It was one of Ted’s core tenets, and he was known to passionately rail against those who showed a lack of faith in his team.

More importantly, it teaches us all to believe in ourselves and each other. To work our hardest and accept whatever happens in our lives. It doesn’t get any more Ted Lasso than this: Hope is belief, and belief is hope.

The ASC Team is a Family

Teamwork makes the dream work.  Despite the disappointment at the Games postponement, the ASC Team has designed an active, engaging event that will leave residents inspired and renewed.

The Ted Lasso Spirit Week is just an example of the fun activities for older adults that can be found at our retirement homes.    If you want to learn more about life at one of our retirement residences, get in touch with us today and ask about senior apartments near you.

Moving into a retirement community can expand your social life and motivate you to get more active. With regular community-wide activities, plus the motivation of our ASC Seniors games, you’ll feel like a part of a team, a part of a family.


Writer – Julianna McLeod

Julianna is a health and wellness expert at All Seniors Care. Her mission is to create content that empowers older adults to form sustainable solutions for lasting health and happiness. She is an experienced writer, editor, and Recreational Therapist living in Toronto.

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