Residents of Belong (UK) remain active with the SilverFit
“Our residents at Belong have improved greatly in their physical and mental health by using the Silverfit system. The interactive media has enhanced the enjoyment of the exercise and everyone wants to exercise more.” – Barbara Tait, lead exercise instructor
A British pilot study at Belong Macclesfield looked into the impact of training using a SilverFit 3D and a SilverFit Mile. They conclude that the systems improve the intensity and duration of the training. Clients who used not to enjoy the training are now eager to come and exercise on the SilverFit equipment. Two groups of residents were involved: residents living in a sheltered dementia care facility and residents living independently. This last group can come to visit the gym in the care center, which functions as a hub for the local community.
The SilverFit Mile is a system that shows video images while the user is cycling on a hometrainer, giving the user the sensation of cycling outside. It was tested by 13 persons. On average, they cycled 5 to 10 minutes longer than without the video. Three people with dementia who did not use cardio equipment before started to use the bike due to the SilverFit videos. One resident who previously could not cycle for more than 5 minutes with a safe regular heartrate, can now cycle for 15 minutes with the SilverFit Mile with an average heartrate of 83-90 bpm.
While cycling on the SilverFit Mile many participants started sharing stories about familiar places in the movies and their memories of those places.
The SilverFit 3D was tested by 22 people. Each person participated in 5-6 sessions in the course of the test. Eighteen of the participants showed significant (8) or some (10) improvement. Some movements that could not be elicited verbally without the SilverFit 3D, such as making a sidewards step, could be performed by the residents while exercising on the SilverFit. The study concludes that the SilverFit stimulates automatic, intuitive movements.
Besides measuring physical outcomes Belong asked 36 participants how they felt about the equipment; 33 of the 36 felt that the SilverFit was a clear improvement. Participants indicated that the SilverFit systems contribute to a feeling of autonomy. Both systems are equipped with lots of different games and routes, so people can choose which game they want to play or which route they want to cycle.
Belong is a healthcare organisation for elderly in the UK. Macclesfield is one of their residencies. They are an expert in dementia care and offer healthcare for elderly people in multiple locations across the North-West (England). Based on the outcomes of this pilot study, they have placed the SilverFit 3D and SilverFit Mile at each of these locations.