Use it or lose it!
Thanks to KinCare's Keeping Mobile and Preventing Falls Programme, Geoff is now enjoying getting out and about more and is looking forward to playing lawn bowls again.
Customer Geoff Raymond is originally from Dunedin in New Zealand, but a holiday to Australia fifty years ago opened his eyes to the beauty and opportunity of Australia. He never left and now lives on the Gold Coast in Queensland.
After a long career of hard work in the building industry Geoff retired and like many people found himself quite sedentary – for seven years in fact. “The worst thing I could have done” he shares.
Lack of physical activity is one of the leading causes of increasing risk of falls and reduced mobility. As we become less active, we lose muscle strength which causes a reduction in function and higher levels of frailty which significantly increases the risk of falling.
In Geoff’s case, he had gone from working long days relocating houses, driving trucks and running his own roof insulation business to suddenly not doing much at all. The impact on Geoff was frightening.
In 2016 Geoff required the full time use of a four wheel walker in and out of the home after having over ten falls in a single year. His final fall down a flight of stairs at home caused broken ribs and meant he had to move to a new single story home. He suffered constant bruising on his arms and legs as a result of knocking things and found himself having to park close to the trolley bay or a stray trolley on shopping outings to ensure he had ‘something to just hang on to” Geoff shares.
In a final and heart breaking blow, Geoff cancelled his social engagements and stopped seeing friends due to feeling embarrassed. His change in posture and being bent over lowered his self confidence and changed his attitude completely. “I felt like an old man” he says.
However, with a can do attitude, “Use it or lose it” Geoff enthuses, and with the support of his Customer Care Manager, amazing Home Care Workers and resident Physiotherapist Mark Sewell, he signed up to the Keeping Mobile and Preventing Falls Programme.
The programme is tailored to each individual Customer based on their needs, level of physical strength and ability and is designed to reach personal goals. In Geoff’s case, it was to get rid of his four wheel walker, and shopping trolleys, and work towards playing lawn bowls and the ability to use his boat again.
So far in the short time since starting the programme, Geoff can easily perform five sit-to-stand manoeuvres in thirty seconds unassisted, balance on one leg and complete his scheduled exercises with ease. Whilst he still has a way to go, the results are incredible.
Geoff is now walking unassisted to the local shops instead of relying on his scooter, he no longer has to look for a shopping trolley to hang on to, and the four wheel walker is now collecting dust. He is also continues to surprise himself and his family, most recently his daughter when he climbed the stairs at her home unassisted for the first time in years.
Geoff’s enjoys being more social, and getting out regularly to play and teaching music at his local church.
Next time we check in with Geoff, we hope he can share some fishing stories!