Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Essex Swimming Centre Supports Accessible Swimming

We all know that swimming provides a wealth of benefits for those with limited mobility, including keeping fit and making friends. It is an excellent way for disabled people or those with limited mobility to feel more integrated into the community and meet like-minded people whilst having some form of exercise to keep fit.

Swimming can also provide aquatic therapy for those who need rehabilitation or physiotherapy for their mobility. Runnymede Swimming Pool (part of Castle Point Leisure) in Essex, has seen the benefits a swimming pool hoist can bring, after recently having it installed.

According to Duty Manager Lee Payne, the hoist (funded by Short Breaks) from mobility experts Dolphin Mobility, has helped make swimming available to those who would not otherwise have the opportunity: “The pool hoist has been vital to a group of our members who are now able to take part and integrate themselves into the community more, rather than becoming socially isolated, by taking part in swimming-related activities.”

The centre hosts a number of members with moderate to severe disabilities who come in to use the facilities with their carer, and the pool hoist has been invaluable. “We have people coming in to use the hoist from different areas and we have found it to be incredibly reliable and very easy to operate, making our lives a lot easier. We would highly recommend having a pool hoist to other centres as it gives disabled people the opportunity to be more involved, get some form of exercise, and helps centres to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act by making them equally accessible to disabled and able bodied people. We are grateful to Short Breaks for their help with funding the hoist.”

Pool lifts are a great solution for making swimming pools disabled-friendly and encouraging more disabled and older people to turn to swimming as an extracurricular activity, enabling them to keep fit and have fun. They can be used in hotels, leisure centres, holiday resorts, schools, colleges and universities – anywhere there is a swimming pool. Christian Dunnage, a Director at Dolphin Mobility, said: “We are delighted with Lee’s positive feedback.

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