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Care home residents lead way in keeping active in later years

PUBLISHED: 07:30 24 May 2019

Residents and staff of Seckford Almshouses preparing to go on their walk Picture: SIMON LEE PHOTOGRAPHY

Residents and staff of Seckford Almshouses preparing to go on their walk Picture: SIMON LEE PHOTOGRAPHY

Simon Lee Photography

A group of residents at a care home in Woodbridge have been demonstrating that age is no barrier to being active as part of Move Suffolk Week.

Residents and staff of Seckford Almshouses striding out on their walk Picture: SIMON LEE PHOTOGRAPHYResidents and staff of Seckford Almshouses striding out on their walk Picture: SIMON LEE PHOTOGRAPHY

The group from Seckford Care - which comproses Jubilee House residential Care and Extra Care housing within the Seckford Almshouses - have been embarking on a daily walk alongside staff at the home.

Mandy Button, activity leader at Seckford Care, said: "To celebrate Move Suffolk Week we have been inviting all residents to come on a walk each morning at 9am, and will be putting up a display featuring their own personal sporting achievements and photos of their favourite athletes/sportspersons."

Mandy points to the Suffolk Care Home Olympics as the catalyst for increased activity in the home, saying: "Since participating in the Suffolk Care Home Olympics, the residents have been taking part in new sporting activities and are particularly keen on competitive sports. They take part in monthly bowls competitions, some from their wheelchairs, and the winner receives the treasured gold medal.

"We have also just started a monthly social club, where the residents play magnetic darts and enjoy a pint (or two) The last meeting got quite competitive between the men and women, with the ladies thrashing the men 3-0. This has caused a lot of hilarity and leg pulling!

"One resident said, 'I never thought I'd play darts again, I'm a bit rusty, but it's great to have a go and is great fun.'"

James Reeder, Suffolk County Council's cabinet member for health, said "No matter what your age and how active you are, the evidence is clear - physical activity can have a positive benefit to your health and wellbeing. Indeed, regular physical activity can maintain and help to reverse some of the age-related decline in physical, psychological and cognitive function and help to maintain independent living and mobility.

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"It's great, therefore, to see the residents of Seckford Care getting into the spirit of Move Suffolk Week and being more active. I'm sure they'll be feeling the benefits."

Matt Abbott from Elatus Sports, who have worked collaboratively with the Suffolk County Council led Most Active County Partnership to deliver the Suffolk Care Home Olympics, said "Seckford Care are one of 40 care homes that we've been working in across Suffolk to deliver the Care Home Olympics. I'm delighted that the initiative has led to increased physical activity. Long may it continue."

Matt Abbott from Elatus Sports, who have worked collaboratively with the Suffolk County Council led Most Active County Partnership to deliver the Suffolk Care Home Olympics, said "Seckford Care are one of 40 care homes that we've been working in across Suffolk to deliver the Care Home Olympics. I'm delighted that the initiative has led to increased physical activity. Long may it continue."

Besides the Care Home Olympics, the County Council has also recently developed and published a toolkit to help care homes in Suffolk integrate activity into day to day life.

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