Grantham group trials Alzheimer's Society scheme to help people living with dementia

  • Video report by Emma Wilkinson

A group of people with dementia have been trialling the use of a new programme designed to keep them more active.

The Alzheimer’s Society has been working with Sport England to develop the Feel Good Folder, which that supports people living with dementia to do more exercise as early as possible after diagnosis.

One of the groups testing it out is based in Grantham, and has incorporated it into weekly meetings.

"It's given her more exercise than she would have," said Tricia Bower about her mum, who she cares for.

"When we're doing the exercises in the afternoon, it kind of forces her into doing something, but it's fun, we enjoy it and we do it together."

The Alzheimer's Society says the programme includes information on the benefits of being active and the different ways people can be active.

It gives them tools such as a "do it diary" to log their activity, a wallchart to track progress and the "movement deck" - a pack of cards which provides activity inspiration, quotes from people living with dementia and facts about physical activity.

Rob Miller said it was an important part of his wife Chris's routine.

"The more she's active, the more she is alert with the mind, she can remember things a lot quicker," he said.

"When we go home, she'll be buzzing and she'll be straight onto doing a jigsaw."

"It really is good, I do try and encourage others to do it," said Chris.

Peter Middleton was diagnosed with early-onset dementia when he was 64 and believes the Feel Good Folder can help others too.

"You have to have a mindset, and I think to have that folder around and to have a poster on the wall and to have those cards in your hand just keeps it in the back of your mind that you really ought to be doing a little bit to maintain your fitness," he said.

The success of the programme means that it is now being rolled out nationally, with the hope that it will have the same success as the pilot programme has in places like Grantham.

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