Pensioner advocates gym visits after double knee op

Rob Bartlett and Pat Whitehead at the Fitness4All gym in Leyburn.

A Hawes pensioner who has had two knee replacements says she now moving better than she has for years after regular visits to the gym.

Pat Whitehead, 70, had both her knees replaced after years of chronic pain.

After the operations she still had pain and her movement was restricted.

However, after being persuaded to try going to the gym, Pat says she is now moving better than she has for years.

Pat went to the Fitness4All gym in Leyburn and has been given a workout programme by owner and instructor Rob Bartlett.

“The operations stopped me in my tracks. I could only walk with some difficulty and I found I was dragging myself along.”

Pat said she had not been in a gym since she was at school and was unsure whether it would be for her, adding: “Me and gym have never been in the same sentence before.”

But she said she found that the hardest thing you will do in a gym is walking through the door for the first time.

After several months of regular visits, Pat says she now felt “totally different”.

“I’ve more mobility than I’ve had for years and I’ve lost some weight which is an added bonus.

“Rob keeps review the programme to make sure I’m getting the most from it. He’s very encouraging but also firm and wont make you do anything you don’t want to.”

Pat said she was now urging others to sign up and get the benefits of going to the gym.

Rob said he was delighted with Pat’s progress which he said highlighted the fact that people of all ages can benefit from going to the gym and doing exercise.

“It’s very rewarding to see people who are struggling come in and improve their quality of life over time, meaning the can play with their grandchildren or do whatever they want to do.

“It’s all about being mentally, physically and socially fit. You only get one life and you need to make the most of it.”