Extend exercise class certificae presentationExtend celebrates its first birthday


Published 9 February 2015


The Extend exercise class designed for elderly and disabled people held at the Gathering Place, St. Athan celebrated its first birthday last week.


From its first session on 4 February 2014, which attracted seven participants, the class has more than doubled with a core group of 16 attending every week, and numbers continue to grow.


Howard and Marianne Jupp, who were presented certificates for attending the sessions since the very beginning, said: “One year on my wife and myself have found the gentle, easy exercising from Extend in the Vale has enthused us to move more. We have made new friends and can look forward to a more meaningful retirement.”


Extend, or Exercise for the Elderly and Disabled, is a holistic exercise class that aims to help older or less able people to maintain independence through gentle exercises using a variety of equipment.


Extend exercise class St AthanAll exercises are designed to improve agility and balance and increase mobility, and are adapted to allow all participants including wheelchair users to take part, with at least 20 minutes of seated exercise per session for everyone.


Shirley Dodd-Clarke, who runs the sessions, thanked the members for their support, as well as the staff at the Gathering Place. She said: “As with all things the first steps are the hardest, but now that this class is well established I hope that the next year will attract even more members and that we will continue to enjoy ourselves alongside improving our fitness levels and giving us all an opportunity to keep fitter in our later years.”


Disability Sport Wales Development Officer Simon Jones, said: “Shirley has worked hard to grow Extend in the Vale. The increase in numbers taking part throughout the year echoes the quality of the sessions with everyone receiving a warm welcome.”


Classes in St. Athan are held on Tuesdays at the Gathering Place from 2pm to 3.30pm, including time afterwards for refreshments and a chat. All equipment is provided, and sessions cost £4 per person.


Classes are also provided at Rhoose and Dinas Powys. For more information, contact Shirley on 01446 751077, email, or visit