Fitness & Exercise

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Fitness is important, whatever your age or physical ability.

accessible gym picNow’s the time to pick an activity you enjoy (so you’ll keep at it!) and see just how much better you can feel.

Whether it’s improving your mood and energy levels, or staving off illnesses from alzheimer’s to coronary heart disease, regular physical activity is a simple way to make life healthier and more enjoyable…

talking pedometerA pedometer can help motivate you to move about more, as it provides an easy way to keep track of your daily activity. The model shown on the left is a talking pedometer designed for the visually impaired.

Upper body work-outs are a good way to improve and stabilise posture, build strength in the shoulders and chest. There are various chair-based fitness programs available, for all ability levels.

fitness picThanks to the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), and subsequently the Equality Act 2010, sport and exercise venues are gradually becoming more inclusive and accessible. The Inclusive Fitness Initiative (IFI) was set up in order to:

• enable disabled people to access inclusive fitness equipment in public sector facilities

• appropriately train a body of disabled and non-disabled fitness staff within these public sector facilities, to maximise the benefits to disabled people of using fitness equipment

• pro-actively promote and market the availability of inclusive fitness equipment for disabled people, elderly and people temporarily disabled

• raise the profile and value of sport, health and fitness amongst disabled people and particularly non-active disabled people

• further promote the pathways for disabled people to subsequently access and progress into existing or new sporting and leisure activities.

Largely financed by Lottery funds, the IFI aims to establish good practice for accessibility in accordance with equality legislation.

Don’t just think about going to the gym. Swimming is great exercise that’s kind to joints. Walking and cycling are effective and enjoyable. How about dance? If you’re lucky you might even find ballet for grannies at your local dance studio.