I volunteered for 7 weeks during the summer holidays in 2019. I am studying for a degree in Clinical Exercise Science at Bournemouth University, and had just finished my 2nd year of study. I had already completed some placements, working alongside professionals holding exercise or dance classes, or facilitating rehabilitation for patients recovering from operations, such as joint replacement or muscle re-attachment and I wanted to broaden my experience.
I assisted patients with exercises aimed at helping them to retain as much independence as possible. I bonded with everyone, but especially with the patients – getting to know their stories. I hadn’t worked with older people before, and it was really good because l learned so much. I had to think about how to adapt familiar exercises to accommodate walking aids, oxygen tanks and various tubes. Some of the patients were very attached to their walking aids, so it was rewarding when l gave them the confidence to use some of the equipment in the rehab gym.