Training helps to keep older people flexible

South Somerset District Council’s Healthy Lifestyles Team helped to keep older and frail people on the move with a fun packed Flexercise session at the Octagon Theatre on Thursday 26 February.

Staff from hospitals, day centres, sheltered housing schemes as well as community volunteers learnt all the basics of Flexercise in an enjoyable but informative session.


Sam Wenden-de-Lira, Healthy Lifestyles Officer at the District Council explained the benefits of the training, “Flexercise is a series of chair based exercises that are an ideal way to keep people who find it difficult to exercise active. The scheme is specifically designed for older and frail individuals and is particularly suitable for people in nursing homes, sheltered housing and hospitals.

“Flexercise can also be used to help people with physical disabilities, learning difficulties and those rehabilitating after a stroke.”

The training can be accessed by anyone – staff or volunteers – who have no prior knowledge of leading or delivering exercise or physical activity sessions. The Flexercise sessions have a large emphasis on fun and are aimed at benefiting the physical, mental and social health of the individuals undertaking the activity. Following the training, it is then possible to lead a Flexercise session in the workplace or a community group.


The training explained what Flexercise is, the medical conditions that older adults may have and activities that can be used with or without additional equipment. As part of the programme there is ongoing support for the leaders and further training to update the activities that they can use within their Flexercise sessions.

Sue Bridge who attended the session said, “Flexercise was great. Excellent resources and theory backed up with practical seminars. We also got a great resource pack and information to take away.”

Councillor Sylvia Seal, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture at South Somerset District Council said, “Flexercise continues to go from strength to strength and it is encouraging to have yet another full session. Our Healthy Lifestyles team have delivered Flexercise training to hundreds of people working in nursing homes, residential homes and sheltered housing. The workshops are an essential way to keep older and frail people more active and engaged.”

For information about the Flexercise programme as well as details of future training dates contact Sam Wenden-de-Lira on 01935 462348, email [email protected] or visit

Photos: Participants in the Flexercise session at the Octagon Theatre on 26 February.