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FIA UPDATE A new life after work


David Stalker reports on how the FIA has teamed up with social design agency thinkpublic, to develop an ambitious project to help male retirees stay socially and physically active


any exercise? Yet older people who are physically active benefi t not only in health terms, but also socially. Reduced physical activity levels and


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social interaction can oſt en begin in retirement, particularly for older men, many of whom are leſt feeling isolated and lonely when they fi nish work. With this in mind, the FIA and design


agency thinkpublic have spent the last six months successfully piloting an online platform to improve the quality of life and health of men entering retirement. With the help of physical activity providers, we are now ready to expand the concept.


The After Work Club T e Aſt er Work Club website is created by men for men, to start new connections


John Searle: Off ering inspiration to others OFFERING INSPIRATION


Examples of male retirees who have found a new lease of life after work, many in the physical activity sector, are inspiring After Work Club participants:


Doctor turns personal trainer: John Searle John Searle retired from his role as a consultant anaesthetist in 1999, when he became unable to perform the technical aspects of the role after he developed rheumatoid arthritis. He has since taken up a new vocation and has been working as a personal trainer since 2005. “I have effectively had a second career when I thought I had been relegated to a not very active retirement. It has been hugely rewarding,” he says.


From architect to Nordic Walking: Duncan Barratt Duncan Barratt is currently an avid Nordic Walking UK instructor and advocator of the benefi ts of physical activity. He retired in 2008 following a career as an architect. At 69 years of age, he has been proactive in his retirement, taking up a new vocation and transforming his own health and fi tness. On average, Barrett spends four to six hours a week Nordic Walking, and a


further 12–18 hours a week doing additional activities. Not only that, but every day he gets to see others taking steps towards becoming fi tter. “I’m going to expand my programme of regular weekly Nordic walks and courses and motivate men – particularly those aged over 60 – to get fi t,” he says.


24 Read Health Club Management online at healthclubmanagement.co.uk/digital


id you know that one in fi ve older people admit they cannot remember the last time they did


Health Club Management is the FIA’s Public Affairs Media Partner


and discussions about retirement. It includes inspirational stories, an events diary to meet and connect with others, and the opportunity to build friendships and share experiences. Over six months, we have talked to


over 350 people about how they feel about the idea of retirement, what it means for them and some of the challenges they face at this time in their lives. What we heard was that the concept of retirement is outdated. Lives are longer and the idea of pottering about for a few years is no longer relevant. For modern men, this is a time of opportunity, a new start, a time to fulfi l lifetime ambitions, re-train, take up something new, live life for yourself. During the trial period, engagement


events organised through T e Aſt er Work Club gained positive feedback. “T e Aſt er Work Club is brilliant because the key when it comes to helping people, especially men, is actually hearing stories of what others have done,” commented one user.


National rollout Further growth of T e Aſt er Work Club requires support from physical activity providers. We are now looking for organisations to step forward and deliver case events or sessions around physical activity, to support this transition from being busy at work to having lots of spare time. T ese will be showcased on T e Aſt er Work Club website and could generate additional members in a demographic not yet maximised within your club or facility. T e Aſt er Work Club aims to scale


nationwide and will inspire, connect and empower men during the transition period away from full-time work and into the next phase of their lives. To fi nd out more about T e Aſt er Work


Club or to list your events or activities, please visit www.theaſt erworkclub.co.uk or contact Karen Prothero on +44 (0)20 7420 8565 / karen@fi a.org.uk


july 2012 © cybertrek 2011


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