Welcome to Osteo Blast No its not!

This is NOT enough exercise !!!

but when I was told I had ‘gained’ Osteoporosis as a side effect of cancer treatment, I wasn’t offered anything more.

But now, if you live in London, thanks to Jade Dalton, there is Osteo Blast. Jade has sent me details of a 16 week exercise programme, led by a qualified instructor.  This will teach you how to exercise safely to minimise the risk of injury and to maximise benefits in bone/ muscle strength and posture. You will also benefit from improved cardiovascular health, mood, self-esteem and general wellbeing.

Now, if this is a success, let’s hope others will copy.

I can’t remember which European country it is, but when I was learning what to do about Osteoporosis I was told by doctors in one country that they would only prescribe drugs to treat psteoporosis IF patients went on an exercise programme.  No commitment, no drugs!

What Osteo Blast involves

Now along comes the Osteo Blast course; where Home Exercise programmes and educational information around bone health will be provided throughout the course to educate individuals on the correct exercises to perform to prevent fractures and to provide further information on lifestyle factors affecting bone health.

Information on Osteo Blast

In 2015, funding was granted by Public Heath/ Adult Social Care with the aim of providing specialised, progressive exercise classes for Westminster residents who either had developed Osteoporosis or presented with one of the risk factors known for developing Osteoporosis. With Osteoporosis known as the ‘Silent Epidemic’ we wanted to raise awareness of the condition and to make sure that individuals could access classes that promoted exercises safe and relevant for their condition. For this we take a broad approach to exercise, targeting Endurance, Balance, Strength, Flexibility and Co-Ordination to reduce the likelihood of falling and severity of the fall may have on the individual.

Particular attention is given to bone loading the wrist, spine and hip which are commonly affected by Osteoporosis. Referrals for the class can either be self-referrals or from a health professional and once enrolled participants are eligible for 16 weeks of classes which is where we’ve seen the greatest improvements in Grip strength and Sit to Stand score.

During the course, participants are provided with two home exercise programmes to supplement the weekly exercise classes. On completion of the programme, they are encouraged to continue performing the exercises at home as well as attending other exercise classes which are recommended by the instructor.

Why the class was set up

Osteo Blast was originally set up by the Over 50s charity Open Age. Open Age currently works across Kensington and Chelsea, Hammersmith and Fulham, Westminster and Brent providing over 380 weekly activities including physical, creative and mentally stimulating activities to enable individuals aged 50+ to develop new skills, maintain an active lifestyle, fulfil their potential and make new friends. To find out what activities you can get involved in with Open Age, please look at www.openage.org.uk or call the main office on 0208 962 4141.

Similar classes are starting up across the UK, so phone your local village halls, and similar places, and see if there is a course  earmarked for a venue near you

Venue:

Osteo Blast currently takes place in the following 4 venues across the Borough of Westminster.

Seymour Leisure Centre, W1H 5TJ

Jubilee Hall Gym, WC2E 8BE

The Avenues, W10 4RS

The Abbey Centre, SW1P 3BU

Dates:

16 weeks of classes running throughout the year.

Cost:

£1 per session

Contact:

Jade Dalton   0208 962 4537  jdalton@openage.org.uk   

Open Age are a London-based charity, but similar charities may be running a course near you.  There is one started in Oxfordshire – (being in Range Rover country it costs £4 a session!)  but is excellent, and if the demand is there – go for it.

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