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Two woman stretching arms

Christine’s voice

After Christine had a stroke she was told it was unlikely she would walk again. Read her story of recovery.

The 71-year-old, a former school catering supervisor recovered her mobility, and now enjoys attending strength and balance exercise classes, swimming and has recently taken up bowling again.

Christine had a stroke whilst driving her car home from an afternoon of bowling in September 2015. The 71-year-old, a former school catering supervisor who has two daughters and five grandchildren, doesn’t recall what happened, other than that she managed to swerve into the curb.

A passer-by stopped and went to her assistance, following which she was taken to Salford Royal Infirmary where she remained for three days without any knowledge of what had happened. She was unable to move or speak when she was transferred to Wigan Infirmary using a hoist, where she then remained for nearly six weeks. At the end of her stay, she had just started to regain some slight movement in her hands and legs, whilst slowly her speech had started to return.

When Christine finally returned to her own home she was told it was unlikely she would walk again. Not satisfied with this, she thought to herself, “I’ll show you!”. Once back in her own home, Christine’s recovery started to take a turn for the better, she had regular visits from her physiotherapist who over time, as she gained more movement and confidence, suggested that she might want to join a strength and balance exercise class that was based in her community.

Christine has been attending the classes since March 2017 and goes to as many as she can fit in during the week. She also goes swimming and has recently taken up bowling again.

Having recovered her mobility, she now helps class instructor Mandy by attending visits with her to other people living locally, many of whom may not go out very much. Christine goes with Mandy to visit people and encourages them to join the community-based exercise classes. She talks proudly of a recent success, where an older gentleman who had not been out for more than five years has now joined a community-based class.

Raising the bar on strength and balance: The importance of community-based provision

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