Silver Sneakers vs Renew Active: Which Is Better?

Silver Sneakers vs Renew Active: Which Is Better?

Silver Sneakers and Renew Active are fitness and wellness programs that come as perks with many Medicare Advantage Plans.

They are both aimed at keeping seniors aged 65 and up active and healthy by providing comprehensive fitness and wellness benefits.

If you are enrolled in a Medicare plan that offers one of these programs, you’ll gain access to:

  • A membership at a gym near you
  • Online classes for convenient home workouts
  • Community events and activities to stay active with others
  • Tools to organize and monitor your fitness routine for a healthy year ahead

Let’s break down the details of each program to see which one may be a better fit for you.

The Medicare Checklist for Ages 66+

Most Medicare info on the web is for those who are new to Medicare. But what about those of us who are seasoned consumers? There’s a few things to know, and this short guide will walk you through them.

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The Medicare Checklist for Ages 66+

Gym Locations

Silver Sneakers has partnerships with over 15,000 fitness locations which include everything from national gym chains to local community centers.

Renew Active partners with over 25,000 gyms and fitness locations, making it the largest national network available. This means that there's likely a gym conveniently located near you.

Online Classes

With Silver Sneakers, you can join live online classes and work out alongside fellow Silver Sneakers members, adding an extra dose of motivation to your routine.

If you can't catch one of those, they also offer an extensive on-demand video library featuring classes, workouts, and helpful how-to videos that you can do from home on your own time.

They also now partner with Burnalong which gives you access to even more online classes, plus a supportive community, and personalized guidance through Burnalong, at no additional cost.

Renew Active also offers an impressive selection of online on-demand workout videos and live-streaming fitness classes for their members.

Community Engagement

Both Silver Sneakers and Renew Active do a great job of connecting you with your local community and keeping you motivated and moving with others in your local area. 

With Silver Sneakers, you can find fun community classes and events like outdoor walking groups and nutrition workshops. Whether it's at a local community center or a nearby park, there's always something happening.

Plus, you can hop online and connect with others through the Burnalong community for that extra boost of motivation.

Renew Active also gets you out and about with social activities at local health and wellness centers. From walks and hikes to arts and crafts, dancing, and even fishing, there's something for everyone.

They also give you access to the online Fitbit Community where you can connect and engage with other members – even if you don't have a Fitbit device!

Fitness Plan and Tracking

Silver Sneakers makes it easy to stay on top of your fitness goals with their smartphone app, SilverSneakers GO. With this app, you can track and schedule your activities, locate participating gyms or activity locations, and even access your member ID on the go.

Renew Active takes a more personalized approach to fitness tracking. They set you up with an annual one-on-one meeting with a personal trainer where you can talk about your fitness goals and come up with a personalized fitness plan that will get you started on the right track.


With Renew Active, you also get access to their online program from AARP, Staying Sharp.

This program is aimed at keeping your mind sharp and engaged by helping you exercise your brain with videos and interactive challenges. You’ll also get a cognitive assessment and lifestyle check-ins.

It's a great addition for seniors looking to maintain cognitive health alongside their physical fitness routine.

Cost and Availability

Silver Sneakers is available at no additional cost for adults 65+ through select Medicare plans. 

Wellcare, Kaiser Permanente, Humana, Aetna, Blue Cross, AARP, Anthem, and Cigna are some companies that may offer Silver Sneakers; however, you'll need to check which companies and plans offer the program in your area. 

Renew Active is specific to UnitedHealthcare, and it's offered in some of their Medicare Advantage plans at no additional cost.


Here’s a quick comparison of the two programs.


  • Both Silver Sneakers and Renew Active offer access to a network of gym and fitness locations across the country.
  • Both programs provide options for live online fitness classes and on-demand workout videos for those who want to exercise without leaving their house.
  • Both do a great job at connecting you with locals in your community with events, clubs, and activities in local community areas.
  • Both programs offer tools for tracking fitness activities and goals, such as smartphone apps and personalized fitness plans.


  • Renew Active stands out with its focus on brain health through the Staying Sharp program through AARP, offering exclusive brain training games and tools.
  • Renew Active has a slightly larger gym network, partnering with over 25,000 gyms and fitness locations, while Silver Sneakers partners with 15,000+.
  • Renew Active is only available with UnitedHealthcare plans whereas Silver Sneakers is offered by many different insurance companies that sell Medicare Advantage plans. 

Which Medicare Fitness Program Is Better?

First, you'll need to figure out is if both Silver Sneakers and Renew Active are offered as a benefit in any Medicare Advantage plans in your area.

If they are both available, the decision on which is better comes down to personal preference.

If you have a particular gym in mind where you prefer to work out, check if it participates in either program and weigh that factor into your decision.

Ultimately, though, you should never select a Medicare plan based on its perks and extras.

Consider these fitness programs a bonus, but please make sure the plan's out-of-pocket costs and network align with your goals and budget.

Do You Qualify for Silver Sneakers or Renew Active?

You'll need to check with your current Medicare plan to see if one of these fitness programs is offered as a benefit. 

If you're enrolled in a Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C) plan, you may have access to one of the programs. 

You can also consult with a Sams/Hockaday insurance agent. If you already work with an agent here, we'll be happy to take a look and see if your plan offers these benefits. 

If you don't work with us yet or would like to make sure you get this benefit in the future, we can run a plan comparison for you. That will help us see which plans are available in your zip code that offer either Silver Sneakers or Renew Active. 

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Disclaimer: We do not offer every plan available in your area. Currently we represent 4 organizations which offer 41 products in your area. Please contact, 1‑800‑MEDICARE, or your local State Health Insurance Program to get information on all of your options.