BAYSWATER council has been given the thumbs-up by seniors for asking what they want, but reduced membership at its two gyms should be a top priority, they reckon.
The council recently started working on its first Age Friendly Strategy and will be holding workshops on February 13, 15, 16 and 17 to hear what seniors have got to say about living in the city and what they need.
Mayor Barry McKenna says it’s important seniors feel heard.
“It is essential that our seniors feel connected and valued,” Mr McKenna said.
“Living an active and healthy lifestyle into older age can improve life expectancy and quality of life for our seniors.”
Down at Bayswater Waves on Tuesday morning they take that seriously; Silver Sneakers is a gym session popular with seniors who are put through a weights circuit by one of the centre’s qualified instructors.
It aims to increase their muscular strength, bone density and general fitness.
While there’s a strong camaraderie amongst participants, there’s not much time for chatting between lifting medicine balls and pumping the walking machine.
“They should change the name,” says Carol Snape.
“It’s called Silver Sneakers which gives you the impression of people shuffling around, but we get really worked out,” she says in between gasps for air.
“It’s excellent,” she says of the council’s plans to develop an seniors strategy. Although she lives outside the council’s borders, she regularly uses Bayswater Waves.
“They should reduce the membership to encourage more seniors to participate,” says Patricia Anthony.
“They offer discounts, but a lot of people can’t even afford that.
“There’s a lot of people who are struggling that are renting,” she says.
Last year the Barnett government roped in a bunch of allowances, including for medicines, as “income” for Homeswest tenants and taxed them at 10 per cent.
Attendance at the four workshops is free, but book by February 9 on 9270 4107.
by STEVE GRANT