- Date awarded: May 2020
- Awarded value: £40,000
- Fund: COVID-19 Donation
- Location: Lynebank Hospital, Dunfermline
Creating an Outdoor Green Gym at Lynebank Hospital.
It's widely recognised that exercise is hugely beneficial for everyone. For the most part, taking part in regular physical activity can reduce the risk of major illness such as heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. It can help with weight management and also boost self-esteem, energy, mood and the quality of sleep. Exercising outdoors offers all those benefits plus fresh air and year-round essential vitamin D.
Located in the grounds of Lynebank Hospital in Dunfermline, the Outdoor Green Gym was launched at the beginning of 2021 for the benefit of the learning disability community, Lynebank patients and staff at the hospital and across NHS Fife.
Access to meaningful activities is an important part of inpatient treatment plans at Lynebank Hospital and gives patients a sense of progress in their rehabilitation. However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, staff at NHS Fife's Learning Disability Physiotherapy Service were concerned that patients at Lynebank Hospital had limited access to outdoor activities and that their community activities such as sports and dance classes were being restricted to ensure safe distancing in line with government recommendations. As a result, many patients and those supporting them experienced impact on their overall health and wellbeing.
Following funding from Fife Health Charity, the outdoor green gym featuring six pieces of all-weather exercise equipment was installed in the grounds of the hospital, creating a safe and secure space for patients and staff to exercise throughout the year. Specially designed and manufactured to withstand changeable weather conditions and constant use, the outdoor gym equipment, which includes a treadmill, bike and cross trainer, offers a mix of cardio and strength workouts and is easy to use to minimise the risk of injury.
THE DIFFERENCE OUR FUNDING IS MAKING
Providing this dedicated exercise space has encouraged patients and staff at Lynebank Hospital to be outdoors more often and become more active, contributing to increased fitness levels and an overall sense of wellbeing.
Opened during the pandemic, the green gym made it possible for patients and staff to spend time outdoors away from lockdown restrictions and have the opportunity to set and achieve personal exercise goals within a safe environment.
Post pandemic, making a regular habit of outdoor exercise continues to bring a range of benefits including improving fitness, strengthening muscles and bones, improving mobility and balance and boosting mood and mental health, all of which helps to make daily tasks easier for the patients and increases independence and their quality of life.
The introduction of the outdoor gym is the first stage of a plan that is being developed to revamp the area with the focus on patient and staff health and wellbeing. Watch this space!