About Us

 

Vision - Finding potential in every seniorOur Vision

Our vision is to give unprecedented support to seniors to be all they can be. We provide customized cognitive coaching to improve quality of life, enable meaningful relationships with family and friends and build cognitive resilience

Our Mission

Our mission is to slow the advancement of dementia, improve the quality of life for seniors, create hope and meaningful relationships and use our business to bring joy to seniors.

 


 

Vision - Finding Potential in Every Senior

Our Programs

At Fit Minds, we understand that everyone has a fundamental need for social connection. This is why our programs are delivered by human beings – not computers. Our programs aim at building social connections and healthy social networks.

We also understand that each individual is unique.

Everyone who uses our programs has a unique personality and situation. We incorporate this perspective into creating meaningful activities that support emotional and mental well-being. Our 5000+ exercise database provides novel and complex challenges across a range of cognition.

The individuals who deliver our programs are our secret sauce. They make all the difference.

The women and men who deliver the Fit Minds programming in retirement communities, long term care facilities and individuals’ homes are our heroes.

 

 


Our Leadership

 

Nicole Scheidl

Nicole Scheidl

As one of the founders and creative minds behind Fit Minds Inc., Nicole has been creating cognitive stimulation therapy programming since 2010. An experienced curriculum developer, teacher and coach, she brings a wealth of experience to creating and teaching the Fit Minds Programs.

Nicole has trained hundreds of professional and family caregivers who have touched the lives of thousands of individuals living with a cognitive impairment. Nicole is a sought after speaker. She has spoken across Canada and the United States on brain health and cognitive stimulation therapy programming. Contact Nicole.

 

 

 

Janet Knupp

Janet has a 25-year track record of success leading start-up, turnaround and rapid growth organizations that require both vision and discipline in strategic planning. A passionate and influential leader who has been an invited speaker at some of the US’s most prestigious universities including Harvard Business School and the business schools at University of Chicago and Northwestern, Janet has also received numerous awards for transforming bold ideas into pragmatic policies and programs in K-12 and higher education.

After selling a private-equity based company she was leading last year, and watching her mother and others at an assisted living facility struggle with dementia, she partnered with Nicole to launch Fit MindsUSA. Contact Janet.

 


 

Chief Scientific Officer

Paul Nussbaum

Paul Nussbaum

Doctor Nussbaum is board-certified in Clinical Psychology and Geropsychology with a specialization in Neuropsychology. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Neuropsychology and American Academy of Clinical Psychology. He is an Adjunct Professor in Neurological Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Dr. Nussbaum is an international leader in Brain Health and Brain Health Lifestyle ®. His 2010 book Save your Brain (www.amazon.com) was named top five in brain fitness by AARP), and was Nicole’s inspiration for starting Fit Minds. His new book (2016), What is the Purpose of My Brain: Spiritual Healing and Salvation (www.amazon.com) is a thought provoking read on higher power and the brain.

 


 

 

Our Journeys

Nicole’s Journey

I can remember the exact ‘aha’ moment when the idea for Fit Minds was born.

It was June 2010 and I was waiting in the Ottawa airport for my parents to arrive. The plane was delayed (as planes often are) so I picked up Dr. Paul Nussbaum’s book – Save Your Brain – and began to read it. I was truly inspired by his message of hope and empowerment.

At that moment, I had a clear vision that a curriculum could be created to provide cognitive stimulation therapy for seniors, helping them maintain maximum brain capacity. I was fortunate to work with a great team of individuals and over the next year we researched, developed and tested the first Fit Minds program.

Over the years it has become so clear to me that human interaction plays a vital role in maintaining brain health. That is why our programs are delivered by human beings – not computers. I believe that face-to-face connections are key for seniors to thrive.

In the words of C.S. Lewis, “You are never too old to set a new goal or dream a new dream.” And the purpose behind Fit Minds is to encourage and empower seniors to do just that by maintaining maximum brain health.

Nicole Scheidl

Janet’s Journey

When my mom was diagnosed with Lewy Body, I felt like someone had punched me in the stomach. Probably the worst thing I did was go on the internet and start researching the disease. I then began mentally calculating how much longer I had with mom.

For a while, Mom was able to stay home with Dad. We hired a social worker to evaluate her and as a family agreed she could stay at home. Dad said he could manage.

It is so hard to know when it’s time.

Paranoia is a symptom of Lewy Body. When Dad came home to two police cars in his driveway because Mom had walked to a neighbor’s house and told her that he was trying to kill her, we realized the time was now.

I remember crying when I toured the Assisted Living Facilities. But once Mom was admitted, she began to thrive. Her paranoia diminished markedly and her mood improved. She made friends and we visited often, always bringing her to our house for Sunday dinners.

Still, her dementia was advancing so I started trying to figure out what I could do to help her. I couldn’t bear the thought of giving her one more drug on top of the 10 she takes daily. I brought her to the neurologist and she recommended another drug. Instead, I chose cognitive stimulation therapy.

I began working with Nicole Scheidl as a business advisor. As you can imagine, I went on the internet and researched everything about Nicole and Fit Minds. Everything I read, and every meeting I had with Nicole convinced me that she was not only an amazing woman who cares deeply about people, but she had founded a great company that was making a difference in the lives of seniors across Canada.

When Nicole agreed I could launch Fit MindsUSA, I was thrilled. I bet you can guess who was one of our first clients.

I still sometimes find myself counting down the days I have left with Mom. But her days are better. Mom feels empowered. We both feel that instead of dementia taking control of her mind, we are getting some back.

My mom is why I wanted to found Fit MindsUSA. I’d enjoy the opportunity to tell you more. Email me: janet.knupp@fitmindsusa.com

Janet Knupp