Later years no time to take it easy

Dot is 87 years old and lives with dementia. But watching her go through the moves in her weekly balance class, she doesn’t look a day over 60.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to be physically active at my age,” said Dot.

“Growing up I could do anything. We lived at Grovely and every day I walked miles to get to Mitchelton State School. I played tennis every Sunday and also ‘cricko’ – a game like cricket that girls played.”

Dot lives independently in her own home in Mitchelton. She uses funding through the Commonwealth Home Support Program to participate in activities and social outings at Centacare Enoggera Social and Community Hub. She loves bus trips, art and music but the weekly balance, yoga and tai chi classes are her favourite.

Dot and her friends at Enoggera hub work with Mobile Rehab exercise physiologists, who provides group classes for over 65s who want to improve their health and wellbeing.

“Some people think that with each passing year they should ‘take it easy’ and do less,” said Exercise Physiologist Jesse Dodd.

“In reality, exercising regularly as you age is a great way to prevent the onset of disease and avoid injuries or lifestyle related accidents.”

Centacare Operations Manager Kat Davies said her staff work closely with Mobile Rehab to ensure clients receive holistic care, in line with their individual health and wellness goals.

“Individual goals vary from client to client. We work with clients that want to manage chronic health conditions such as stroke, arthritis, depression or obesity,” said Ms Davies.

“Some want to build strength, healthy bones and joints to reduce falls and the risk of injury. Many of our clients want to simply maintain their good health and physical function, which they know will help them live happily and independently in their own homes and communities for years to come.

“Education is a big part of what we do. Our clients are encouraged to incorporate activity into their lives in as many ways as possible. In addition to our structured group classes, our community hubs also offer more leisurely pursuits that involve physical activity such as bocce, woodwork, men’s shed, gardening, walking, outings and day trips.

“We see the benefits first hand in many of our clients, which is just wonderful.”

If you’re over the age of 65 and want to improve your health and wellbeing, find out more about our social and community support activities.