This month we spoke to Steve Royle, Exercise Physiologist at the UQ Health Care Ipswich Bremer Medical Centre.

What have been your highlights whilst working at the Bremer Medical Centre?
Meeting and assisting so many great members of the Ipswich and Somerset Regional communities in the past three years suffering from one or more chronic health conditions to better self-manage their health with exercise and physical activity.

Assisting UQ Health Care to co-ordinate and facilitate seven falls prevention programs across the Ipswich and Somerset region in 2015 which saw 105 people attend these programs over the eight week period.

Building my type 2 diabetes group services from one class offered weekly to five in the past year and educating many Ipswich GP’s and nurses on the benefits of group services for type 2 diabetes.

What does a typical day look like for you?
I provide a number of group exercise classes weekly for different medical conditions injuries and individual consults for Medicare and DVA referrals as well as private paying customers.

What aspects of your role in providing healthcare for older people do you enjoy the most?
Showing them how to fit exercise and physical activity into their daily life around their other commitments which makes it more manageable and achievable for them.

Being able to work with a person to empower them to improve self-management and their quality of life.

Breaking down the stereotype that they are “too old” to be active or exercise!

Why is exercise physiology important for healthy ageing?
Exercise is medicine! We are the best allied health professional to provide guidance in this area as we utilise exercise as our primary method of treatment to manage and prevent chronic injuries and health issues.

Exercise is one of the cheapest forms of treatment/ management available. A recent report found that for every $1 spent on exercise physiology interventions the average person saved $10.50 over the course of the year (or a net benefit of $5,938 yearly).

Exercise and physical activity can be used to manage a wide variety of health issues. Nine out of nine recent health priority areas identified by the Australian government have large amounts of quality evidence to suggest supervised and professionally prescribed exercise is effective in their management.

What results have you seen with your older clients?
Goals and results vary so much depending on the person and why they are being referred however some of the more common ones include – improved self-confidence, improved quality of life, improved self-management of health conditions and reduced symptoms related to health conditions.