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An ageless exercise
Monday 24th September, 2012

An ageless exercise
Members of Active Later Life at Lowther Gardens, Lytham

IT has been practised for hundreds of years as a way to reduce stress, improve balance and increase strength.

Tai Chi’s mixture of slow and gentle movements has long been lauded as a great exercise for older people.

Now Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust’s (WLCT) Active Living team has been awarded second prize for their use of the Chinese martial art as part of a national campaign to get older people active.

In August, a group of over 60s from Wigan and Leigh walked from the windmill along Lytham Promenade to Lowther Gardens where they took part in a Tai Chi session.

The trip, organised by WLCT as part of their Active Later Life programme, was designed to encourage older people to regularly use strength and balance exercises to help prevent falls.

It was also part of a national campaign called Otagothon 2012 Challenge and World Congress of Active Ageing, held in the UK for the first time and organised by Later Life Training. Events were held across the UK in a bid to increase the number of older people involved in exercising and to promote the importance of regular strength and balance training for older people to aid independence in later life and reduce falls.

Top prize was awarded to Forth Valley NHS and their work organizing an Active Ageing day in Peak Sports Village, Stirling.

Gill Healey, Specialist Activity Instructor for WLCT, said: “We’re delighted to be awarded second place.
“Taking part in strength and balance exercises can assist older people to maintain their independence in later life.
“By staying active and getting involved, older people can be more healthy, happy and able to contribute to the community. At Active Living we know that’s true and we want to help older people of all interests and abilities to choose an active life.”

To mark the achievement Active Living has been awarded two free places on a continued professional development course by Later Life Training.

Active Later Life delivers various sessions to help prevent older people from falling.

Details of these sessions can be found at www.getactivewiganandleigh.co.uk or by calling 01942 886 802 or 01942 488 481.

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