‘Press-ups in the park’ is the latest initiative to encourage a group of young people with special needs from Redhill, Surrey to keep in trim.
The fine autumn weather has allowed the group – who all live at Ambleside Lodge residential care home – to work-out in the open air.
The idea is for the individuals, aged 18 to 28, to develop an exercise regime they can transfer to the local gym for when the days turn colder.
“For most of them it’s the first time they’ve taken part in this kind of regular exercise and they’re loving it,” said service manager Rebecca Cretten.
“It’s a wonderful way of making the most of the great outdoors, especially with the lovely mild weather we’ve had recently.
“Once the temperature dips we’ll start to exercise indoors instead; they’re looking forward to trying out proper gym equipment.”
The gym sessions will supplement the group’s swimming and trampolining classes at K2 Crawley leisure centre and Saturn V in Caterham.
Other activities include weekly sessions at Dayspace learning centre in Caterham, regular games’ nights, air-hockey and arts and crafts.
Rebecca recently took over the reins at Ambleside Lodge – an eight-bed service that supports adults with moderate to severe learning disabilities, autism and behavioural difficulties.
The service is run by ACH, part of the Regard group, the UK’s fourth biggest provider of care homes and supported living services, who recently received a Gold Investors in People award.
“These are a young and energetic bunch of young people and they are always on the go,” added Rebecca.
“One of the young men who lives here who has both a learning difficulty and a visual impairment has really taken to cooking.
“There’s nothing he likes better than when people ask for more – his lamb meatballs are especially popular!
“He also likes to prepare the food if we go on a picnic. We’re quite close to Box Hill and organise regular hikes there.”