People in Cardiff and the Vale requiring neurological rehabilitation are now able to access exercise and activity groups within the local community thanks to the ‘Let’s Get Moving’ project at Better Leisure Centres.
The Better Cardiff programme works closely with the Community Neurological Rehabilitation Service established by Cardiff and Vale University Health Board to enable people with neurological conditions to use local leisure facilities and support people to self-manage their condition.
Deborah Yates, Fairwater Centre Manager, said:
“These sessions are aimed at those who may have had a long term illness or looking to get motivated again after a long absence of exercise. It is low intensity and attenders can go at their own pace. Participants are supported along the way from our professional, highly qualified staff at the centre. There is no age restriction and no criteria for joining. Anyone can take part in the inclusive sessions, get motivated and get moving together. It is a great place to be social and meet others in your community.
“The partnership with the Community Neurological Rehabilitation Service has been a great way for Better Leisure Centres in Cardiff to understand what can be offered to encourage regular participation by people that would normally only attend hospital based exercise classes.”
For someone like Bernard Perry from Llandaff North the sessions mean he can get involved with football and play the traditional game, even though his mobility is limited as a result of a stroke.
“As well as being great fun, I have seen a big improvement in my fitness and ability to exercise. It has been a natural extension of my physiotherapy”
Craig, age 31 from Roath, added:
“I was paralysed for months and was expecting to be in hospital for a year. I am now on the road to recovery and exercising in the community is a vital part of my rehabilitation. I didn’t think I would be able to take part in something like football so soon but the walking football is great in building up my stamina and getting stronger.”
Gemma Moses from Riverside said:
“Each one of us attending the Mobility Circuit Class has a different condition ranging from stroke to MS and we are all given the chance to exercise and share experiences. The sessions provide us with the space to talk and let off steam in a caring and knowledgable environment. The team understand our conditions and provide useful techniques to make day to day living more manageable.”
Huw Davies, Community Neurological Rehabilitation Service Lead at Cardiff and Vale UHB said:
“Earlier this year we set up a project to provide people with their rehabilitation closer to home so they do not need to attend hospital sites for these appointments. The classes are for people ranging from 19 years old to over 80 years old that have a neurological condition including brain tumours, stroke, traumatic brain injury, MS and acquired brain injury.
“This innovative way of working allows our clients supported access to local leisure facilities and promotes ongoing healthy active lifestyles. We have placed two Active Passive Trainers (APT’s) in Fairwater and Llanishen Leisure Centres and have also provided training for the staff working in these facilities.”