85-year-old Barbara from Tendring, lost her mobility after a hip replacement last year. Before her operation she had been attending sewing classes with friends and enjoying taking her dog for a walk. However, her loss of mobility meant she could no longer do this.

She needed a walking stick to get around and stopped attending her classes and walking her dog, because she didn’t feel confidence crossing the road. “I became doddery on my feet and my bathroom had to be completely renovated to make it accessible,” Barbara said.

In March this year, she took the courage to contact Paul, a personal trainer. They began walking slowly, using heel to toe actions to stop Barbara shuffling and gradually increased the walking intensity, to improve balance and flexibility.

Paul said: “A few weeks after Barbara had started training, she began to return to do the things she loved; going to the shops, walking and gardening. She is going to her classes again and feels confident crossing the road.”

Barbara said: “He’s given me my life back! I’m not mobile, walking around unaided and using the stairs…I wish I had my bath back!”

Cheryl Lomas, Active Essex, stated: “Barbara’s story is amazing, it shows how much potential individuals have if you find the right activity and support.”