Posted: Fri, 29 May 2020 16:00
During this uncertain time, Activity Alliance remains committed to ensuring disabled people can be and stay active. We are especially mindful that there will be even more disabled people and people with long-term health conditions, who feel isolated and less active. Our #StayInWorkOut blogs will explore the different ways disabled people are moving and staying active, while at home.
Activity Alliance is proud to support Sport England's new Join the Movement campaign. It gives people fun and creative ideas on how to get active in and around their home.
There are many ways to continue enjoying an active lifestyle. This includes adapting activities so everyone in the household, disabled and non-disabled, can take part together, or on their own. We'll be sharing ways people are making the most of their space and equipment at home.
Today we hear from Bertie. He tells us the different ways he's been keeping active with his family, and by himself. His biggest achievement since staying at home has being able to hula-hoop for the first time!
Hi, my name is Bertie and I live in the North West of England. I have congenital muscular dystrophy and my lung function is less than 60%. Because of this I have to stay safe at home for 12 weeks.
I usually take part in a lot of different activities. I horse ride with Riding for the Disabled Association at Bowlers Riding School in Formby. I also take private swimming lessons at Dunes Splash World. Before lockdown I tried out gymnastics at school too. This was through Beth Tweddle's gymnastics. The gymnast teacher and my teaching assistant adapted some of the exercises for me. I was picked for Gymnast of the week which was cool! I'd also ride my Tomcat trike around my block too.
I can't do any of these things right now. And I can't walk very far for my daily exercise without getting really tired and my legs starting to hurt. So before staying home, I used my wheelchair for adventures like going to the beach or Formby Pine Woods. I'd get out and walk around when we got to a good bit. I miss this.
I've been doing lots of fun activities since being at home. Daddy ordered arrows with foam tips. He put a target up in the garden and has been teaching me how to hold the bow and helping me pull the string back.
I had learned a lot of exercises in Alder Hey Children's Hospital hydrotherapy pool but now I have to stay at home. Mummy and Daddy put a hot tub in the garden so that I can still do all my exercises. I think my school swimming teacher, John, will be really impressed because I've been practicing my arms and kicks. And I can do the best and longest star fish ever! Our holiday was cancelled and I was really looking forward to swimming every day. Being able to do my exercises in the hot tub and the star fish makes me happy because I'm sort of swimming.
Mummy says the hula-hooping and the water exercises are helping with my muscles. I'm not as strong as I would like to be and I don't want to get weaker. I sometimes feel sad about that. But it's good if I use my muscles as much as possible. I do miss the horses and swimming lessons but I feel really happy in the water at home, and more calm when I come out.
My sister, Emmeline, lets me borrow her big hula-hoop. I've never been able to hula-hoop before. I've been practicing my hula-hooping in my garden. I like it because it's funny and it makes me smile. it's a nice feeling moving my hips round and round. It's a bit like dancing. Also, I can do it by myself if everyone else is busy. My biggest achievement while at staying at home has been keeping the hula-hoop up!
I love being active with my family. I like it when Emmeline and my brother Archie join in with me. Emmeline is amazing with the hula hoop. She can do it for ages and ages. She is good at bug hunting too. My brother is really good at archery because he went to a club and had lessons. I like to play with my dog Sally too. But she is rubbish at fetch and I have to keep getting the ball back myself! She also likes to play football with me.
Being stuck at home I've had to think of new things to do. I was really surprised that I could hula hoop. I didn't know I could do that. I just kept trying. It is really good to give things a go, even if you think you can't, or you can't do it as well as other people, just give it a go.
Support on being active at home
If you are not as active as you would like to be or you know someone who isn't, visit our being active at home page to find a list of exercise advice, workouts, videos and activity guides for disabled people.
Join the movement and share your own experiences of being active:
Use the hashtag #StayInWorkOut on social media to share your accessible exercises
Don't forget to tag in us on Twitter, find us at - @AllForActivity