Hip, hip hooray for Stevenage fitness fun that keeps golden oldies coming back for more

Pat Moody, Brenda Whitmore and Betty Owen during a session

Pat Moody, Brenda Whitmore and Betty Owen during a session - Credit: Archant

An exercise class for the over sixties is proving so popular that one member didn’t even let a broken hip stand in the way of her taking part.

Diana Seller of Knebworth Physiotherapy Clinic

Diana Seller of Knebworth Physiotherapy Clinic - Credit: Archant

The Keep Fit/Keep Well classes at The Bragbury Centre on Kenilworth Close in Stevenage have attracted members from their sixties to their nineties, and are still going strong 12 years after they were first established by the Knebworth Physiotherapy Clinic.

With a recent study showing regular exercise in old age can increase life expectancy by up to five years, the classes, run by a chartered physiotherapist, are working wonders for their members.

Betty Owen, 78, said: “I have been going there since the beginning. It’s just very sociable and I’m lucky enough that I can do all the exercises at the moment.

“When I fell down five years ago and broke my hip, someone took me in a wheelchair and I was still able to do some of it.”

Diana Seller with her class

Diana Seller with her class - Credit: Archant

Brenda Whitmore, 65, said: “I started when I’d had one replacement knee and was about to have another one and I wanted to get as strong as possible beforehand. I only intended to do it for six or seven weeks, but I have been going for four years and I can’t give it up. I enjoy the friendship.”

Pat Moody, 73, said: “A bit of exercise doesn’t do you any harm, and I haven’t written myself off yet! I get peace of mind that I’m doing some exercise and it does me good. It’s also a good meeting place. I’m going to keep going as long as I can.”

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Matthew Seller, practice manager at the Knebworth Physiotherapy Clinic, said: “The classes have proved enormously popular ever since we started running them, and in addition to keeping elderly people healthy and mobile, they have the added benefit of providing an excellent social gathering.”

The Keep Fit/Keep Well classes run from 1.45pm to 2.30pm on Mondays and from 1.30pm to 2.15pm on Tuesdays and cost £2.50 per session. For more information, call the Knebworth Physiotherapy Clinic on 01438 812258 or turn up at a class.

Click here to find out more about the clinic’s work