Senior londoners get active again
Residents living at Norton House care home in Westminster, London, have been given the opportunity to get active and increase their health using the Motiview concept – cycling to a chose of thousands of videos from around the world easily accessible through the system. They have also for the first time signed up to participate in the annual global championship, the ‘Road World for Seniors’, against thousands of residents in care homes across the world. The participants aims to clock their km during the four weeks of the competition, having the opportunity to compete for world class titles.
Getting healthier with Motiview
“This was my seventh time. Mostly I’ve been doing routes along the North African coast but the first one I did was in Israel. I have really enjoyed it.” Peter Lazarus, 79, is a former French infantryman who loves to cycle to videos from around the world using the Motiview video library. “I read about these bikes in the British Medical Journal and how it helps the flow of circulation for people who don’t have much activity and who have dementia.”
And joining Peter is Debbie Cordingley, 65, who used to work as a school teacher in Ghana. Debbie chose to go local, and her first cycling trip with Motiview started at a very well-know place in London, namely outside Buckingham Palace. “I really enjoyed it. It was very relaxing and I hadn’t been on anything like it,” Debbie says. “I’ve got a few friends who take me out sometimes, otherwise I only go as far as the courtyard. So I enjoyed getting the exercise.”
And the senior cyclists are cheered on by their local community: “So it is a great honour that Norton House has been chosen to participate in this race – and we hope that the residents enjoy the experience as well as trying to win.” Says Councillor Heather Acton, the council’s cabinet member for public health. “As a local authority we have pledged to do our best for people living with dementia and are working on a strategy for the City.
Residents at Norton House are eager to get fit and healthier using the Motiview system
Lack of opportunities leads to health challenges
Unfortunately, seniors – and especially those residing in long term care – are left out of many opportunities for activities and especially those designed to tackle physical inactivity. And the challenges with finding activities that feels safe and suitable for older people and people with dementia to increase their physical health is something that many care staff are struggling with. Today, more and more care homes are experiencing the impact of the Motiview system to foster increased physical activity, as well as mental health and social connectedness.
The impact of physical activity
When providing the opportunity that motivates to exercise using the Motiview video library, physical activity, reminiscence and social connectedness increase. Strong indications show that physical activity can slow down the progress of dementia symptoms, supported by a substantial amount of research. And the benefits that physical activity has on general mental health is well-known across the board. And in addition to the physical and mental health, conversations are triggered when using the Motiview videos, building new connections and strengthen existing social bonds as people reminisce and share stories while watching places they know or recognisable scenery.
Manager for the care home Felicia Imafidon, is already seeing the benefits from their new initiative: “They’ve had it two weeks now and you can really see an improvement in how far they go on it. Some of them are disappointed at only getting to use it for 15 minutes. Peter was saying how he is looking forward to going to Jerusalem and Greece.”
Representatives from Sport England, British Cycling and Motitech meeting up at Heathlands Village in Manchester, cheer on the dedicated cyclists.
To further strengthen the benefits of the initiative around physical activity and the Road World for Seniors in the UK, Motitech has entered into a five year partnership with British Cycling and Sport England – beginning in 2019. This partnership will further support Motitech in delivering opportunities for older people to remain active through cycling.
With the support from British Cycling and Sport England, funded by DCMS, more care facilities across the UK are able to access Motitech’s technology take part in the Road Worlds for Seniors. “We are incredibly excited to be able to announce the partnership with British Cycling and Sport England ahead of Road Worlds for Seniors this year”, says Jan Inge Ebbesvik, President of Road Worlds for Seniors at Motitech. “The support means that we can get even more people and care homes involved in Road Worlds for Seniors across the world, and create that feeling of friendly competition and community. We want to encourage older people to compete, have fun and get active at the same time.”