Bernice’s Story – Exercise for Older People
After two hip replacements and having lower back problems I was looking for a way to build up my muscles, and also strengthen my body in general. As I don’t like the gym or repetitive exercises I knew I had to find something that I would enjoy long term. I searched online for inspiration and I found the Move it or Lose it classes, which I joined in June 2019.
These classes are definitely for me as it combines dance, which I love, with gentle exercises which are varied and can be completed either sitting or standing, and are easy enough for me to do at home. It is all done to music, which adds to the enjoyment. The exercises can be done using everyday items, such as holding different size bottles of water or tins of beans, instead of buying expensive weights. We have also been taught that we can build muscle without using any weights at all. No two weeks are the same and they are fun and full of laughter.
There is also the social side to these classes where we meet and join in with other people, which is of benefit for anyone living on their own who may not even talk to another person for several days at a time. We are encouraged to talk and interact with other members of the class, and to remember each other’s names through memory games. We are also taught that we can keep our memory alive through games and association.
We are taught how to strengthen muscles safely by using resistance bands and bender balls, and the correct way to bend down to pick something up so as not to damage our backs. One of the best things I have learned is the ‘sit to stand’ exercise. Before I joined Move it or Lose it I couldn’t get up from a chair without using my arms to help myself up. By exercising the glute and thigh muscles I have learned to stand up from a sitting position, by using my muscles instead of relying on my arms.
I love my Move it or Lose it classes and really look forward to going every week and doing some fun exercises, meeting people of my own age and having fun!