Seniors work up a sweat and gain new-found confidence
RESIDENTS at Bolton Clarke's Moreton Shores community in Thornlands have been joining with local seniors to break a sweat as they test out a new seniors-friendly gym.
The purpose-built space with cutting-edge fitness equipment is already delivering results, assisting residential aged care and retirement living residents and members of the broader community with strength, balance and cardiovascular fitness.
The equipment is designed specifically to support wellbeing for ageing bodies. It includes features like well-supported seating with upright adjustable backs, weight systems which run off an air compressor allowing slower and more gradual incremental weight progressions and accessible sitting in a wheelchair.
Moreton Shores occupational therapist Mark Aumuller, who oversees the gym program, conducts an initial physiotherapy assessment with all clients, and said most people experienced improvements quickly.
"The equipment is very motivating as it provides a more specific training program; our clients can see and track their results in a tangible way within a short period," he said.
"We're seeing an increase in the amount of men coming along to take part in the strengthening exercises that this equipment provides. It's far more appealing to them than attending a traditional physiotherapy or balance-based class, which tend to be female-dominated.
"A lot of clients report feeling stronger within 3-4 weeks and their ability to be more active in their day-to-day lives increases. There is no fear to take part as it's a safe and controlled environment, more appealing than a regular gym. As they see, feel and experience their results they want to attend more and more often."
Janice, who lives with her husband in their family home at Victoria Point, comes to Moreton Shores to use the gym two days a week and says it has given her new-found confidence after a fall last year.
"The gym is great! It's given me stability," she said.
"I've had a couple of falls, and the doctor wanted me to do something to strengthen my muscles. I used to walk with a walking stick but I don't need it now, and it's all through doing the exercises here at the gym with Mark."
Janice is not alone in her success.
Geoff, who has lived in the Moreton Shores retirement community for 16 months, comes to the gym once a week.
"I've been really looking forward to this exercise class," he said.
"I've had very physical jobs over my lifetime and I find it relaxing. I've got rid of a couple of niggling issues that I've had all my life. I love living at Moreton Shores, and not just for the gym - it's a really nice environment, with lovely people, and the staff are wonderful."
The additional time spent socialising has also had a real impact on several gym regulars.
"It's great to get the exercise and meet other residents at the same time," Moreton Shores retirement living resident Josie said."
"When you live on your own, to have a chat and a laugh is always good."
The gym is open for sessions between 8am-midday on Tuesdays and Thursdays for all older people.
For more information, contact Moreton Shores on 07 3286 8600.