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Stockport stroke survivors get active with Stroke Association’s new Moving Forward programme

The Stroke Association launched its new Moving Forward After Stroke programme in Stockport on Tuesday 06 February, to help local stroke survivors get more active.

Working with partners GM Active, the charity has developed a free 12 week exercise and education programme for stroke survivors across various locations in Greater Manchester. Starting in Stockport, the programme will see participants come together each Tuesday at Life Leisure Avondale, to help reduce their risk of another stroke, and improve their levels of fitness.

Each week, the two hour sessions will cover topics including simple lifestyle changes, healthy diet, and improving mood, as well as an exercise class with a Life Leisure instructor qualified in stroke rehabilitation.

Stockport stroke survivors

Father of two Gary James, 48 from Stockport, is an IT consultant and was a keen walker before he had a stroke in October 2016.

Gary said: “I used to love exercising, even climbing the Three Peaks, however all that has changed now. My stroke left me with weakness on my right side and affected my communication. I really enjoyed the first session; as well as the exercises, it was great to meet others who have been through a similar experience. I know how important it is to keep working on my recovery and that’s what I aim to do with the programme.”

Eamonn Greene, Stroke Association Support Coordinator, said: “More people than ever before are surviving a stroke, which is fantastic news, but the condition can be devastating, leaving far too many people facing a lifetime of disability. The Moving Forward After Stroke programme sessions will help local stroke survivors improve their mobility and fitness, while also learning how to help prevent another stroke in the future.

“The programme also enables Stockport stroke survivors and carers to meet others who are also rebuilding their lives life after a stroke, build their confidence and lift their mood. We’re excited to bring this new programme to the town in partnership with GM Active member, Life Leisure, and look forward to seeing how it progresses.”

Michelle Childs, Senior Physical Activity Development Officer at Life Leisure, said: “We are really excited to be offering specialist exercise support to those who are stroke survivors in Stockport in partnership with the Stroke Association. By delivering this condition specific course, it means that participants will receive the necessary level of guidance and support about exercising after a stroke and we aim to give them all the confidence they need to remain physically active in the longer term.

Clare Morley, spokesperson for GM Active, said: “We are delighted that several of our members are working in partnership with the Stroke Association on this innovative programme that can really make a difference to the lives of stroke survivors. The launch in Stockport is just the start of a wider roll out of the programme across some of the other boroughs of Greater Manchester, and our members are looking forward to implementing it more widely very soon.”

There are more than 6,000 stroke survivors living in Stockport. The programme is open to stroke survivors at any stage of their recovery. To find out more and join the next Moving Forward After Stroke programme, contact Eamonn Greene at the Stroke Association on 075155 97171, or email