Leisure and social activities
Information about a range of leisure and social activities that are available in Barnsley.
Enjoying mental and physical activities can help reduce the risk of many conditions, such as Alzheimers disease, osteoporosis obesity, diabetes and depression, as well as helping you get out and about and make new friends. Living a healthy lifestyle can allow you to get out and about and socialise and enjoy more aspects of your life.
There are many things you can do to exercise both your body and mind. As a society we are living longer and we now have far more time to enjoy our retirement. It is important to remember that it is never too late to start to make changes to your lifestyle and routines in order to improve your health and wellbeing.
Local organisations and culturally specific services can offer plenty of help and advice, There are day and community centres, classes and groups which give you the chance to meet new people and try new activities. If you are active and keen to help others volunteering can be stimulating and rewarding. For more information about local support groups contact Voluntary Action Barnsley
Looking after yourself
Physical activity is a good way of not only keeping physically healthy, it also helps to keep you mentally alert, and can help with stress and anxiety too. A well-balanced diet is also vital to your health and wellbeing. This should include plenty of fruit and vegetables and lots of water to keep yourself hydrated. Fruit and vegetable are key to a healthier lifestyle and you should aim to eat at least 5 portions each day. More information about healthy eating can be found here
The benefits of physical activity
Keeping physically active has a huge number of benefits; it helps to reduce the risk of conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke; it strengthens your muscles, aids mobility; encourages a healthy appetite and a good sleeping routine. It can reduce the risk of falls, osteoporosis, stress and depression. It stimulates the brain, keeping brain cells on the alert.
Physical acitivity doesn't mean having to join a gym. You can take up dance classes, walk to the shops instead of taking the bus or tackle the garden. If you are not able to be active when standing up there are lots of seated activities you can do. Excercise also gives you the 'feel good factor' - making you feel more energetic and more likely to get out and meet people. Barnsley's Fit for the Future offer a range of classes and activities throughout the borough.
Keeping mentally stimulated
Many activities help keep your brain mentally agile; crossword puzzles, chess, bingo, learning a language or taking a cookery course. It is also possible to train your memory to some degree, for instance by making lists. Just turning up at one of the borough's community centres and meeting new people may be all the mental stimulation you need. Check your local newspapers, village hall or community centre notice boards to see what's on in your area.
If you are going out to a class or centre, you'll also be meeting new friends, which is stimulating in itself. Your local library is a good source of information and should have leaflets and directories about local activities. Contact Adult Learning for details of classes in your local area. Age Concern also run a number of friendly and informal classes aimed at the over 50's including; computers for beginners, French, art, yoga and flower arranging.
There are many factors that can lead to depression, such as loneliness, ill health, loss of mobility or bereavement. Symptoms may include a loss of appetite, insomnia, weight loss, lack of motivation and little energy. It is normal to feel one or two of these at any time, but if you are affected by a combination of them talk to your GP about diagnosis and treatment.
For tips on how to stay healthy and details of local groups and organisations in your community that offer social and leisure activities you can download a copy of Forward from 50
Voluntary Action Barnsley has further details about community groups and activities on their website.