Being physically active and eating a healthy diet can have a positive effect on your health and wellbeing at any age. Regular physical activity has a host of health benefits, including: improving cardiorespiratory and functional health, strength and balance, and reducing the risk of diabetes and heart disease. Furthermore, it can alleviate stress, depression, and anxiety and therefore improve overall wellbeing and quality of life. This applies to both carers and care recipients, including those who are frail or affected by disabilities and/or other medical conditions. For care recipients, introducing regular activity can help them to maintain their autonomy and live independently for longer. Nutrition is also an essential component of improving or maintaining health and functionality and becomes increasingly more important as we age. A healthy diet can help manage and reduce the risk of developing chronic conditions like heart disease and diabetes. Together, implementing a programme of physical activity and good nutrition can bring variation and diversity to the daily routine and can be a fun and interactive method of spending quality time together in a way that benefits both of you.
The purpose of the WHOLE Programme is to bring these benefits to the homes of care recipients and their carers by creating an easily accessible e-learning programme for physical activity and nutrition. There are many circumstances that can make it difficult for older people to access external health promotion programmes, including lack of mobility and cost. WHOLE can help carers and care recipients to overcome these obstacles by providing a comprehensive and customisable programme, which is available for free online. This programme allows carers to train themselves as instructors in physical activity and nutrition for older people using videos, pictures, and downloadable info sheets. Exercises are provided in different versions, sitting or standing, so even those who cannot stand will be able to take part. A nutrition module covering some of the main dietary issues encountered by older people is also available in downloadable .pdf format and includes methods of monitoring nutrition, meal suggestions, and templates for meal planning.
Face-to-face training on how to use the training will be provided by each of the partners in their locality, which includes Linz in Austria, Sofia in Bulgaria, Münster and Stuttgart in Germany, Patras in Greece, Galway in Ireland, and Netanya in Israel. However, anyone can learn to use the platform and the WHOLE Programme it provides using our Guide for Learners.
For more information on the project, e-learning platform, or how to use the WHOLE Programme at home or as part of a professional service, contact your local project manager or the project coordinator.
The WHOLE programme is free, user friendly, and easily accessible through our custom built e-learning platform, and contains a range of simple, gentle exercises and a module of nutritional info sheets full of useful tips and suggestions.The WHOLE programme will provide you with a comprehensive home physical activity and nutrition programme for care recipients and carers that:
The WHOLE programme is for both formal and informal carers. You can use the e-learning platform free-of-charge. Please read our terms and conditions before using the e-learning platform.
You can do the physical exercises with care recipients who are, at a minimum, able to sit. However, we recommend consulting a physician before starting an activity.
I like the WHOLE program and learned some new interesting points particularly concerning healthy nutrition. The Physical activity module is very well designed and is very suitable for people with health problems.
The exercises when done together with my patient brought something completely new in our daily interaction. It put us in good humour and with very positive feelings.Greece:
This programme provides me with an opportunity to take a break from my care giving tasks, to establish new ways of communication with my patient and a relief from the burden of care giving.
Sometimes the care recipients showed less motivation in concluding the sessions but for others it was so much fun that they wanted to do even more than the scheduled times.Israel:
I was surprised to find out that my care recipient was able to do quite a lot of the exercises, and even to remember the exercises. For example: he remembered the aerobic exercises. I felt that it was good both for me and my care recipient.
We trained at home. Sometimes my care recipient did not have enough energy or was too tired. However, she enjoyed the group activity of caregivers and care recipients together.Germany:
It is good that the exercises are adaptable both for the individual’s health condition and fitness level.
We had a lot of fun and found that the muscle tension in the shoulder-neck area was reduced as a result of the exercises.