• Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

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Golf in Society tees up fun-filled day at Teesside care home

Gables-Golf-in-Society

A TEE-RIFIC golf-themed activity had Teesside care home residents swinging with joy when they putt their skills to the test on an indoor green.

Anthony Blackburn, from Golf in Society, swung by The Gables Care Home, on Highfield Road, to lead residents through the person-centred golf session.

The day started with a warm-up, when residents limbered up and learned that conquering the greens starts with the ability to rotate their wrists.

Anthony then set up a putting green for residents to test their swings. When everyone was confident with the club, it was time to hit a round-robin competition.

Tom Bateman, 81, was a keen golfer during his days in the RAF. He said: “I used to play at Redcar when I was on leave from the RAF.

“There were four of us who used to go and we would laugh like mad all the way round the course. I stopped playing because I injured my knee.

“I loved playing today. It was just like old times.”

Stella Hodgson, 89, was also a former golfing hobbyist. After having a go at putting, under Anthony’s tutelage, she said: “I did this years and years ago. It’s nice to know I can still do it now.”

Even newcomers to the game like Ramendra “Paul” Bikash, 90, who was initially worried he would fall taking part, soon got into the swing of things and started walking unaided and demonstrating his putting skills.

Samantha McCormick, activities coordinator at The Gables Care Home, said: “To begin with some of the residents were reluctant to take part but, after watching how easy it was, they were willing to give it a go.

“Tony was so patient and kind and made sure that everyone enjoyed themselves.  After the session everyone’s feedback was really fantastic and they all want to take part again.

“We all want to say a huge thank you to Anthony for bring something new and different to the residents.”

Golf in Society was founded by Anthony Blackburn to deliver golf sessions for people living with chronic illnesses, such as dementia and Parkinson’s, among other age-related conditions.

He said: “We started an outreach program into non-traditional settings, such as care homes, with a view to giving residents an attainable sports-based experience.

“Delivering the sessions at The Gables, and partnering with Hill Care across the Tees Valley, helps us to deliver meaningful and fun activities sessions.

“Golf is so good for the body as it helps with flexibility. It stimulates the brain to learn a new skill, no matter a person’s age.

“When residents successfully master the putting techniques and begin to sink the balls they get a real sense of achievement. It is inspiring.”