Blog | Program Spotlight on Strength for Life

Program Spotlight on Strength for Life


sfl equipmentKeeping active and exercising is important no matter what your age and continuing to exercise is important as we age - it improves quality of life, promotes better health and research is even showing that it's good for your brain. The type of exercise you do has an impact as well - including strength training in your exercise plan is a good idea; we know that muscle strength can be regained and maintained no matter what the age or physical condition of the participant - and supervised strength training is not a high risk activity for over-50s

The benefits of strength training

It's been shown to:

  • improve balance and reduce risk of falling
  • enhance mental wellbeing
  • improve body composition (more muscle, less fat)
  • raise self-esteem and self-confidence
  • reduce lower back pain
  • enhance older people's ability to undertake activities of daily living and maintain an independent lifestyle

In response to this, back in 2004 COTA SA developed our Strength for life (SFL) program with the aim of promoting health and wellbeing among over 50s through progressive strength and balance training - and it's been going from strength to strength ever since.

How SFL works:

  • A program of exercises is tailored for each person to suit their individual needs by an exercise physiologist (Tier 1) or fitness trainer (Tier 2).
  • Participants pay a maximum cost of $7 per session or an equivalent monthly or weekly fee. They also pay a once-off $25 for an assessment with fitness instructor or $45 with Exercise physiologist, which includes an exercise program.

SFL improves balance, increases muscle strength and has the capacity to positively affect people who have chronic conditions, for example those with diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis, to name a few.

SFL can be conducted in many different types of venues from mainstream gyms to community facilities. SFL works with a number councils around SA. Equipment can be extremely varied from one facility to another. Some will use machines, others will use free weights, various bands, fit balls, balance discs and many other tools.

COTA SA is very proud of the SFL program, it's one of South Australia's most successful preventative health programs for over 50s - and with around 80 accredited partners there should be one near you.

If you'd like to learn more or get involved, visit the Strength for life page on the website; or see the list of gyms to find a gym near you.