A swim group of older people open water sea swimming in Northern Devon with one person close up and the other swimmers behind in the distance.

Join the Movement and Help People in Devon Live Longer Better

Live Longer Better Devon exists to help the people of Devon as they age to:

  • be more active (physical, cognitive and emotional).
  • increase their healthy lifespan.
  • reduce the need for health and social care.

Whether you have a formal or informal role in supporting the health and wellbeing in later life, or you want to understand how to help yourself live longer better, read on for inspiration and ideas!

What is Ageing?

What do you think of when you hear the word ageing? Ageing can be associated with illness, disease and disability and we often think of older people as needing more care. Of course, it is the case that many of us in later life do live with long-term health conditions and disability and need additional care and support.

It is also true that we do start to age from our mid-twenties.

However…

The natural rate of decline from our mid-twenties is very gradual and ageing alone is not the sole cause of these later life challenges. Our lifestyle, environment and our attitude to ageing have a huge part to play in how fit and healthy we are as we get older.

Being more active, physically, cognitively and emotionally, can help keep us fit and well for longer, reducing the period at the end of our lives when we are dependent on others for care.

Given that ageing starts in our twenties, activity is vital throughout our life course. It can slow the rate of physical and mental decline. Below are just a few of the benefits of being more physically active.

It can reduce your chances of:

  • type 2 diabetes by 40%.
  • joint and back pain by 25%.
  • colon and breast cancer by 20%.
  • having a fall.
  • anxiety and depression by 30%.
  • cardiovascular disease by 35%.

Understanding More is Key to Making a Positive Change

The great news is that even if you live with a disability or health condition it is never too late to get active and every minute counts!

It can be hard to change habits and be more active, especially as we get older, ‘old habits die hard’ has some truth to it. Understanding people’s lived experience, motivations, challenges and barriers is key to providing opportunities and support for people to make a positive change to their activity habits.

Unite with Partners and Join the Live, Longer, Better Devon

The Live Longer Better movement is here to help. Our vision is to unite partners and stakeholders across Devon to promote active and healthy ageing by making it easier for people to get and stay active as they age.

As part of this, it is so important for us to learn and understand what it means to age-well in Devon and identify the barriers preventing a life well-lived.

We recognise that conditions and systems in which people live across Devon are different and not equal. And of course, our own mindsets have a part to play – we all think and act differently in relation to the concept of ageing.

We all want to live longer and live better but how can we help ourselves and help others towards living a longer and better life?

Do join us and become part of the Live Longer Better movement in Devon.

How to Join Us?

You can request a learning licence or book a learning workshop by contacting Tom Mack. Tom is the Live Longer Better lead at Active Devon and the strategic lead for the Later Life priority theme. You can find Tom’s contact details on our Meet the Team page.

You can also get in touch by using our Contact Us form on the website.

The Challenge is Clear

Did you know that:

In Devon 24% of the population is 65 and over, way above the national average of 18%. The Active Lives Survey shows us a considerable difference in inactivity levels as we age, with the proportion of inactive people in Devon nearly doubling between 65 years and 75 years.

Plus, according to the Devon Joint Strategic Needs Assessment, in 2018 there were over 3600 admissions to Devon Accident and Emergency departments because of falls, and nearly 6% of over 60s living with dementia.