By Kimberly Willison, Senior Recreation Therapist

Forever…in motion is a health promotion strategy to improve and or maintain the health of older adults living in the community through support, education, evaluation, partnerships and the promotion of healthy lifestyles. 

This program was created in 2002 as a recreation therapy initiative starting with eight pilot sites. We are very excited to announce that we have been successful in the establishment of a total of 107 Forever…in motion sites in Saskatoon Health Region – 72 in the City of Saskatoon and 35 in rural areas.

Two seniors keep active.

Forever…in motion promotes healthy living for older adults. The program was created in 2002 as a recreation therapy initiative starting with eight pilot sites. We are excited to announce that we have been successful in the establishment of a total of 107 Forever…in motion sites in Saskatoon Health Region – 72 in the City of Saskatoon and 35 in rural areas.

Collectively, we have trained over 250 volunteers and staff that are able to lead safe physical activity programs.  Community-dwelling older adults that are physically active reduce their risk of falling by 40 per cent. This not only allows people to live independently and remain in their own homes longer but also reduces their need for accessing health care services.

The national average is that one in three people over the age of 65 and one in two over the age of 80 will have a fall within the next year. In 2013, we completed an evaluation that showed the average age of our Forever…in motion participants is 81 years old, yet only one in four of the Forever…in motion group participants reported having a fall in the past year, well below the national average.

The rural Forever…in motion sites have grown rapidly because of a Community Initiatives Fund (CIF) grant and will continue to be supported through this funding until March 31, 2015. At this time we are advocating for additional recreation therapy resources to continue to support the established rural programs and their leaders as well as the communities expressing interest in starting new sites.

For more information about the Forever…in motion program please contact Kimberly at 306-655-2286 or kimberly.willison@saskatoonhealthregion.ca