Physio students offering fitness assessments to over-60s

Physiotherapy students from the University of Plymouth are helping over-60s assess their health at a series of community events.

The Functional Fitness MOTs are being carried out in Plymouth, Plymstock and Kingsbridge over the coming weeks where participants are taken through a variety of tests that will give an indication of their exercise performance.

The tests, which include flexibility, muscle power, balance and aerobic endurance, come with a set of ‘normal values’ for people of different ages to give them an idea of whether they are doing well compared to their peers, or whether they could benefit from being more active.

Participants then receive a free personalised workbook of results and will learn about local physical activity and exercise opportunities in and around their local area.

Dates and times are as follows:

Date Time Location
24 May   13:30 – 16:30 Elspeth Sitters House, 1 Hoegate Street, Plymouth, PL1 2JB 
09 June   13:30 – 16:30 Quay House, Ilbert Rd, Kingsbridge, TQ7 1DZ 
13 June   13:30 – 16:30 William Venton Centre, 8 Memory Lane, Plymstock, PL9 9GH
 Just walk in on the day or book a slot at the reception desk. 

Anyone interested in taking part can email Dr Liz Candy for more information.

The Functional Fitness MOTs are a not-for-profit project hosted by Zest Physiotherapy for Life, which specialises in physiotherapy for older people. The events are run in conjunction with Age UK in Plymouth and with Age Concern in Kingsbridge, and more than a dozen people attended the first event at Elspeth Sitters House in Hoegate Street, Plymouth this week.

Dr Liz Candy, Lecturer in Physiotherapy at the University of Plymouth, said: 

“This is an exciting opportunity for students to be involved in health promotion for older adults as well as engaging with the local community, and I am sure both the students and participants will benefit greatly from the experience. I’d like to thank Age UK and Age Concern, as well as Pauline at Zest Physiotherapy, for making the sessions possible, as it’s a fantastic opportunity.”

Pauline Virgo, founder of Zest Physiotherapy, said: 

“Through my work as a physiotherapist, I know people want to stay active as they get older but often don’t know what is available in the area and what would suit them best. The Fitness MOT is a great way to give an indication of their exercise performance and whether they are doing well compared to peers, or could benefit from being more active. The physiotherapy students are doing a fantastic job. I am very impressed by their energy, knowledge and confidence in promoting active ageing to the public. Such positivity is very motivating and helps our participants develop an action plan based on their MOT test results.”

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