Muscling Up Against Disability

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A new article published in the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity reports on the cost-effectiveness of centre-based, progressive resistance plus balance training for Australians over the age of 65 years; the Muscling Up Against Disability program.

Burnie Brae, in partnership with the University of Queensland and Bond University, are pleased that many Brisbane adults aged over 65 years are set to benefit from this joint project. The project was funded under the Federal Department of Social Services’ $34 million nationwide Aged Care Service Improvement and Healthy Ageing grants program.

The two year study involved 245 people over the age of 65 years undertaking 24 weeks of progressive resistance and balance training to improve their health and wellbeing. The exercise program was delivered by accredited exercise physiologists and builds on Burnie Brae’s extensive expertise working with seniors in its Healthy Connections Exercise Clinic at Chermside.

The object of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of progressive resistance training as a service model of care, to help people stave off later life disability and live independently for longer.

Burnie Brae Chief Executive Officer, Kevin Rouse said, “An important outcome of this program is the benefits our participants have experienced, not only significant improvements in strength and balance, but also reduced levels of anxiety and depression. The participants were all receiving in-home support through Burnie Brae, meaning they started the program with some level of disability. To see the improvement in their physical capacity and independence is hugely satisfying.”

At the conclusion of the two-year project, Muscling Up Against Disability has been shown to be both valuable and cost-effective. It represents a good value proposition for organisations wanting to implement an exercise program to assist older adults experiencing functional decline and requiring in-home care services.