Gentle physio chi helps elderly Cottesloe residents with balance, activity

Wearne Cottesloe therapy assistant Suhanya Ramamgorthi holding a Physio Chi session with residents.
Wearne Cottesloe therapy assistant Suhanya Ramamgorthi holding a Physio Chi session with residents.

A GENTLER approach to exercise is helping Cottesloe residents keep their independence.

Margaret Cox loves getting out an about and socialising.

But her ability to do so was at risk prior to moving into residential care because she was prone to falls.

Now at Wearne Cottesloe, Ms Cox is one of a number of residents taking part in Physio Chi.

“Before I moved here I used to fall and couldn’t get up,” she said.

“This helps with balance. It’s relaxing and it’s all with friends.”

Physiotherapist Nicole Platell said the activity was an adaptation of Tai Chi focusing on “slowed, deliberate movements with the aim of optimising coordination and relaxation”.

Benefits include improved mobility, a calmer and clearer mind and lower blood pressure. Ms Platell said it was helping residents keep their independence.

“If they sit in their room and don’t do anything they’ll lose their ability to care for themselves,” she said.

“The more movement and the more activity we can encourage them to do the better off they are for it.”