Swimming with dementia

How we helped rekindle a love for the pool

Isobel Porter has rekindled her love for swimming at 81-years old after being diagnosed with Dementia.

The Malden Centre has been working with the Star and Garter care home to arrange disabled swim sessions for their residents. The Star and Garter provide care for Veterans and their partners who live with disability or dementia. Working with the Malden Centre to start disabled swim sessions has ensured that all participants can use the pool comfortably, at their own pace.

Isobel visits the Malden Centre with her husband Jeremy, both swimming short distances and even trying some aqua aerobic exercises. Jeremy said “My wife has always been happy in the pool… She loves the sessions and keeps asking when she can go back.

“You can see it is very positive for her demeanour and it lifts her, she’s happier afterwards.

“I could see how much she was enjoying herself. She does exercises in the pool, and she’s getting stronger and more confident in the water with every session.”

Jeremy, who served as a Reservist in the Royal Marines in the 1960s, also thanked those who made it happen: “I’m so grateful to the staff at Royal Star & Garter and the Malden Centre, who worked together to do this for Isobel. I hope it will benefit other residents in the Home as well.”

Elderly customers stood outside Malden Centre

Marie O’Loughlin, Contract Manager at the Malden Centre says “The smile on Isobel’s face when she comes in and swims is incredible, it’s genuinely heart-warming to see. I’m so happy we are able to accommodate her and welcome her to the Malden Centre.”

After speaking with Isobel and Jeremy, Marie has now agreed regularly visit the Star and Garter home and work with the residents with chair exercises, as well as hosting various Dementia Aqua classes.

Take a look at all the fantastic facilities the Malden Centre has to offer.