Women from the Allsorts Ladies Group, based in Portadown, have undertaken a rigorous keep fit programme to stay active and encourage physical activity amongst members. The Group provides social activity for women in the area.
The eight-week physical activity programme consisted of a series of armchair aerobics and Boccia sessions as well as reflexology classes and Capacitar Training - which focuses on breathing exercises to help lower stress levels, control emotions and pain management.
The fitness regime was funded by Southern Investing for Health Partnership’s (SHIP) Small Grants Programme. The Partnership is a committee of the Public Health Agency and covers the council areas of Armagh, Newry and Mourne, Dungannon, Cragiavon and Banbridge.
Geraldine Haire, Chairperson with the Allsorts Ladies Group said: “The IFH grant provided the group with an excellent opportunity to participate in these new and exciting activities. The classes are a great community initiative and contribute to improving the overall levels of fitness and confidence of our members.”
Investing for Health Officer with SHIP Cathy Devlin added: “Physical fitness is a key priority for the Public Health Agency and the SIHP is therefore delighted to fund and support this kind of really excellent local action.”
Regardless of age or current fitness levels, physical activity has a number of health related benefits. It can help to lower blood pressure, reduces the risk of stroke, diabetes or heart disease, helps weight control and can reduce the risks of some cancers. By building muscle and strength, co-ordination and balance can be improved thus preventing the risk of falling. Exercise can also help to reduce stress, anxiety or depression as well as aiding sleep.
Cathy concluded: “This physical activity programme is a great way of bringing people together to meet each other, have fun and keep fit all at the one time.”
For further information on the Southern Investing for Health Partnership log onto www.southernifh.com.
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