Staying fit to stay independent

Advice from Dr Liz Robin, Director of Public Health at Cambridgeshire County Council

Dr Liz Robin

“It’s never too early or too late to take steps to ensure that you remain fit and independent for as long as possible. A combination of strengthening exercises at least twice a week and 150 minutes of aerobic exercise is best to build, or maintain fitness. (Find out more about exercising - 

Doing the right type of strengthening exercises is important.

For older people, ‘strength and balance exercises’, which strengthen the muscles in the legs and improve balance and co-ordination, have been specifically proven to help people stay strong and steady. (Information on exercises to prevent falls.) 

Other activities known to help build and maintain strength are resistance training, ball games, racket sports, dance and Nordic walking. Tai Chi, Yoga and cycling are good for balance as well as bones and muscles. (New report: how people can age better by doing the right workouts.)

Find out more about strength and balance exercise in later life in our Be Well section."

Local support

In Cambridgeshire, Forever Active and RightStart run sociable and relaxed group based strength and balance exercise classes.

Everyone Health offers motivational one-to-one support and a personalised strength and balance programme that people can do in their own home.