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Sport Bay of Plenty is part of an exciting new project which is looking at creating access to approved community group strength and balance classes across the Western and Eastern Bay of Plenty for older adults. This is part of a nationwide initiative to reduce falls and fractures and support older people to ‘live stronger for longer’.
Why strength & balance classes?
Research shows that older people with muscle weakness, balance issues or mobility limitations are 3-5 times more likely to fall in any one year than those without these problems. There is also evidence that community group strength and balance classes can reduce falls by 29%.
Falling over and losing your strength and balance shouldn’t be considered a natural part of ageing. In actual fact, improving your strength and balance is considered to be one of the most modifiable risk factor with regards to having a fall.
It all comes down to ‘use it or lose it’ and the classes that Sport Bay of Plenty is helping co-ordinate will involve simple but effective exercises that will improve leg strength and also challenge participants balance in a fun and safe environment.
For more information about preventing falls and how to make your home ‘fall-proof’ go to www.livestronger.org.nz
What are the benefits of attending a strength and balance class?
- Maintain your independence
- Decrease your risk and fear of falling
- Maintain or improve your movement confidence
- Maintain or improve your ability to do everyday activities such as getting out of a chair and climbing stairs
- Meet new people, while improving your strength and balance in a fun and friendly environment.
Sport Bay of Plenty wants to see numerous strength and balance classes available in all communities (big and small) around the Western and Eastern Bay of Plenty.
To do this we are looking at training up volunteers, exercise instructors, community groups, church groups, activity coordinators or residents at retirement villages in how to lead strength and balance classes.
If you are interested in offering a strength and balance class in your community or if you would like to be trained up as a strength and balance instructor, get in touch with Rachel Garden on (07) 578 0016, 021 191 6544 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Strength & balance classes frequently asked questions:
What will the classes involve?
Classes will be developed to suit a range of abilities and ages – so whether you are 65 or 95 you will benefit from attending. As well as including a range of exercises that will help improve your strength and balance the classes could also include some gentle exercise to music, exercises to help your core strength, fun activities to improve your balance and stretches to help with your flexibility.
Will I have to wear lycra or special clothing?
No, unless you want to of course! Comfortable clothes that you can move in, and flat, comfortable shoes is the only pre-requisite.
Will I keep up?
The instructor will be able to adapt the exercises to make them easier or harder to suit the participant – so yes, you will be able to keep up! Although these classes may make you breathe a little harder, they won’t involve any exercises that could do you harm.
Who can attend a class?
Anyone over the age of 60 years who wants to maintain or regain strength and balance.
How much will it cost?
The cost of the class will depend on who is taking it and where it is being held. As a general guide most classes will cost between $4-$10. See class details below for more information.
Where are the classes?
Strength and balance classes are going to be set up all around the Eastern and Western Bay of Plenty. New classes are being set up all the time, if you could like to know when a class is starting in your area then fill out the contact for to your right.
Got a question? Contact our Project Leader on the form below:
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