CITY College Plymouth students are teaming up with the Plymouth Raiders to help keep the mature members of the community in shape and to help combat loneliness with a new initiative called Active Ageing.
Active Ageing, which is supported by the National Lottery Community Fund, invites older members of the community to come along to the college’s sportshall on Tuesdays and Thursdays to play walking basketball.
Walking basketball has seen a steady uptake across the country, with people of all ages joining in with this slower, lower-impact version of the game.
Plymouth Raiders coach Paul Nicholson will be leading the sessions, which will start on Tuesday (January 14). He will be assisted by a group of students all studying sports-related courses at the college.
In addition to helping the players on the court, the students will also be on-hand for some post-match fellowship. While the Raiders have been holding walking basketball sessions for a few years, this is the first time students have been invited to assist with coaching.
Phil Hughes, community foundation manager at Plymouth Raiders, said: “Walking basketball is a great way for older members of the community to maintain their fitness. It’s a low-impact cardio workout that can burn up to 250 calories in a one-hour session, it can improve your heart and lung function and boost your morale and energy levels.
“In addition to the health benefits, we want these sessions to be an opportunity for participants to meet new people, enjoy some lively conversation and potentially make new friends. It is as much about the fellowship as it is about the fitness.”
The Tuesday sessions will run 9.45am – 11.30am. Play will last for about 45 minutes, after which participants are invited to enjoy conversation over coffee and cake.
Thursday’s sessions, which run 11.00am – 12.15pm, will include a light lunch. The post-game refreshments will be served in the college’s PL1 Restaurant by hospitality and catering students.
Hughes added: “These sessions will be completely free, including the food, and people are welcome to come on their own or with a couple of friends.”
There is currently no requirement to book these sessions in advance, just turn up on the day. More information is available from Phil Hughes, who can be contacted by calling 01752 778342 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org