Clothes peg challenge and 50m walk among events in Sunderland older people’s Olympics

Eighty year old June Frater taking part in a Fun Olympics challenge at the Mews Care Home, Herrington Burn, watched by Brenda Howe and Julie Green.'This event was the most pegs on line in one minute, others included a fifty metre walk with zimmer frame for the home's eldest resident.
Eighty year old June Frater taking part in a Fun Olympics challenge at the Mews Care Home, Herrington Burn, watched by Brenda Howe and Julie Green.'This event was the most pegs on line in one minute, others included a fifty metre walk with zimmer frame for the home's eldest resident.
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FORGET London 2012 and welcome to the Mews Care Home Games.

Feisty pensioners proved you’re never too old to feel some Olympic fever by organising an Olympiad of their own.

Eighty year old June Frater taking part in a Fun Olympics challenge at the Mews Care Home, Herrington Burn, watched by Brenda Howe and Julie Green.'This event was the most pegs on line in one minute, others included a fifty metre walk with zimmer frame for the home's eldest resident.

Eighty year old June Frater taking part in a Fun Olympics challenge at the Mews Care Home, Herrington Burn, watched by Brenda Howe and Julie Green.'This event was the most pegs on line in one minute, others included a fifty metre walk with zimmer frame for the home's eldest resident.

Residents at the Herrington Burn home have been taking part in a competition which encourages older people to get active.

The OAPs, including a 102-year-old, have been taking part in a series of events including a 50-metre walk and seeing how many clothes pegs they can put on a washing line in under a minute.

Workers from charity Age UK have also been on hand to lead a gentle keep-fit session.

Brenda Howe, the home’s activities co-ordinator, came up with challenges for the event, which has been organised by Napa (the National Association for the Providers of Activities for Older People).

She said: “It’s about getting them to join in and get active. For the 50 metres walk we’ve got a 102-year-old lady taking apart, Ena Lowes, a former nurse whose brother used to play for Sunderland.

“A couple of them have been training, putting so many pegs on a washing line in under a minute, and some of the staff will be putting so many pairs of knickers on in under a minute.

“It’s about getting them involved in something different.”

The Go for Gold Challenge is made up of five areas – triathlon; games; dance with me; walk with me; and your own ideas.

Winners will be named at the end of July and invited to a closing ceremony in London at the end of September.

A Napa spokeswoman said: “We have lots of research about the wide range of health and well being benefits about physical activity for older people.

“Often people just want the opportunity to get started and join in. Sometimes it’s not always easy to get involved, especially in later life.

“This is a chance for everyone to get involved and become physically active in lots of ways and not just through formal exercise sessions.”

Mew Care Home’s 19 residents already have full social lives, with Brenda arranging activities including playing bingo, watching films and baking.

Twitter: @janethejourno