Fitness is the focus for Chalmers Home recreation officer Jonny

It’s hands on for Chalmers Home resident Bruce Moir and recreation officer Jonny Breedon.


Jonny recently settled in New Plymouth from the UK where he worked in sport enabling people with disabilities to gain success in their various disciplines.

His experience in the disability field translates very well into his fitness activities with Enliven’s Chalmers Home residents.

“Even small exercises help elders maintain all-important strength and flexibility,” says Jonny.

He enjoys finding a way to work with each resident to get the best outcome for them.

“It’s good to work one-on-one with our elders, help them get moving, even if they don’t always feel like it. Small things like taking them through hand and foot exercises helps them retain some of their independence.”

Chalmers Home resident Bruce, a once keen sportsman who played rugby and did gymnastics, agrees that keeping a level of fitness is essential.

“I like to get up and about,” says Bruce. “It’s a matter of use it or lose it.”

Meaningful activity and a sense of purpose aligns with Enliven’s philosophy of care, which follows the Eden Alternative – designed to keep people’s spirits alive.

As well as physical fitness, Jonny utilises aromatherapy and music therapy.

“An important part of my job satisfaction is knowing what I do helps,” says Jonny. “Creating a mind as well as a body experience where the results can be seen.”

Chalmers Home diversional therapist and team leader Eugenia says Jonny is an all-rounder, taking residents for walks and dancing with them during happy hour.


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