Turanga Health is blitzing exercise boredom by adding a heritage focus to its exercise programme walks and runs.
Gisborne’s new cycle and walkways have inspired the Turanga Health Heritage Trials and this week Three Rivers Medical GPs, nurses and administration staff experienced the unique way of exercising. “It was a gentle introduction to physical exercise without knowing you’re actually doing it!” says Dr Tom James, who often refers patients to Turanga Health.
Turanga Health chief executive Reweti Ropiha says the issue for many people wanting to exercise is that “it can be a challenge staying enthusiastic. Sometimes just pulling on your shoes is the hardest thing”.
To improve uptake and keep whānau (clients) motivated and interested, Turanga Health has incorporated a heritage focus to its walks, runs, and outside exercise sessions. “We want our whānau to want to come back, and this is just one way to do that,” says Mr Ropiha.
The walks, runs and exercise sessions take in all or some of the following locations: Kaiti Hill, Oneroa Walkway, Wi Pere Monument, the Hirini St Cemetery, and each of the three rivers: Turanganui, Waimata and Taruhera.
Five Turanga Health physical activity kaiāwhina have received education in the history and heritage of the area including the geography, voyaging history, social history, and flora and fauna.
Physical activity kaiāwhina Albert Tibble, who took last night’s Heritage Trail, says it is important local GPs referring patients to Turanga Health’s wraparound services know and understand what’s on offer. “That way they might be more likely to refer. It’s about relationship building with the GPs, and sharing with them the nature of the services we offer here at Turanga Health”.
Turanga Health’s services complement care and treatment patients receive from their general practice. Its wraparound services include health and fitness programmes for whānau each targeting a different group - whether it be people with diabetes, or mums with babies wanting to get back into exercise.
Dr James said this type of activity is a really great option for spending time away from TV and computer screens. “Albert shared lots of historical and cultural factoids along the way. I didn’t know for example, that the Te Poho-o-Rawiri Marae had been on two previous sites.”
Three Rivers Medical Operations Manager Lisa Hamblin said “it was a treat to actually take the time to really look at, and appreciate, the beauty of our area with the added bonus of a knowledgeable narrator.”
Earlier this week Ilminster Intermediate School teachers took part in a Turanga Health Heritage Trail. Turanga Health works in a number of local schools and in time wants to share the heritage trail walks, runs and exercise sessions with more school-aged children.
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