Life Leisure has been awarded the contract to fulfil Stockport’s new ambitious Specialist Physical Activity Service for local residents.
The new service will help people with chronic health conditions to get and stay active.
Commissioned by Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council, the Specialist Physical Activity Service will receive referrals from GPs, cardiac rehabilitation services, physiotherapists and weight management services.
It will take an integrated approach with other local service providers to align with the ambitions of the Stockport Together programme, and work as part of the wider Healthy Stockport family of behaviour change services focussing on positive lifestyle changes.
Life Leisure, which manages 12 sports and leisure facilities in and around Stockport, has delivered the Physical Activity Referral in Stockport (PARiS) scheme for the last 7 years.
Physical activity can have variety of benefits for those who have been affected by poor health. Of particular focus for the experienced Life Leisure team will be those with heart conditions, diabetes, obesity, anxiety and depression, arthritis and those at risk of falls.
Michelle Childs, Senior Physical Activity Development Officer said: “As well as improving their overall health and wellbeing, becoming more active can help people who’ve been affected by illness to regain better quality of life, confidence and motivation.
“Often people who’ve been affected by a health condition can struggle to find the right ways to start taking up physical activity again. By putting the person at the heart of the service, they are able to lead on how and where they become more active and can do it at their own pace.
“We advise on the most appropriate methods to suit their condition, whether this be visiting a gym, swimming or other activities in their local community, but we encourage participants to take ownership for their health and physical activity.”
The new service, which is expected to support around 1,500 people every year, will be delivered by a specialist team, all of whom have worked in this arena for many years. As well as operating from Life Leisure’s high quality facilities, the team will also be delivering services in the heart of local communities.
Malcolm McPhail, Life Leisure Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted that Stockport recognises the importance of physical activity for those people with chronic health conditions and we are looking forward to playing a very important part in improving these peoples’ lives. We’re proud to be contributing to the overall success of Stockport’s innovative vision to improve the health of its residents.”
Cllr Tom McGee, Stockport Council’s executive member for Health said: “The Specialist Physical Activity Service is a fundamental part of Stockport’s Health and Wellbeing strategy.
“Life Leisure’s proposal for the new service builds on their impressive work delivering the PARiS scheme and we are confident that with them at the helm, this new programme of work will deliver even more benefits to the people of Stockport.”
Pictured: Colleen Platt (left), age 71 from Reddish, put on a significant amount of weight after sadly losing her daughter. She was referred to Life Leisure through her GP and the PARiS scheme, and has now lost 6.5 stone. She is pictured with Michelle Childs (right), Senior Physical Activity Development Officer.