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Senior citizens walk, partake in aerobics to live longer

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Some Senior Citizens living in Festac Town of Lagos State have decided to come together to walk and carry out aerobics to make them happier and live longer.

A group, known as Charity Organisation for the Welfare of Aged People (COWAP), the organizers of the event, said that they decided to embark on the walk and exercise to keep them going and live longer.

The Group’s Founder, Mr Esan Olusola told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the aim of the programme was to help the elderly by addressing their health needs.“One of the things that is good for them is exercise.
“Today, they are walking a distance of two and half to three kilometre, which is from here (the Amuwo Odofin Local Government Council office) to 206 Park in Festac Town).

“The walk shouldn’t be too much for them. “We also have a medical team of doctors, nurses and an ambulance to go with them in case they need medical attention on the way,” he said.

Olusola said that the group depended on donations from members, relations and well-wishers to fund its activities.
Mr Jola Ogunlusi, a Patron of the organisation, also told NAN that the association meets monthly but hold the walks quarterly.

He said that the meeting served as the forum to enlighten them more on the need to keep fit and grow older through regular exercises.

“We meet every month to discuss health matters and care of the elderly.
“We usually have walks every quarter but some people are saying we should make it every month because they enjoy it,” he said.

Mr Jeje Adeoye, the group’s Physical Education Instructor, 79, said that exercises were introduced to keep the elderly like himself healthy.

“We will not only depend on the road walks for exercises. We still have other exercises like going to the beach and mountaineering,” he said.

Dr Abimbola Ashagba, a member of the medical team said that many members of the group had cultivated the habit of personal exercise through the walks and aerobics they partook in.

“Many of the people here also remember to do the exercises we do here at home on their own to keep fit.
“It also helps them to remember to go for short walks in the evenings,” she said.

The 70 year old, retired doctor said, “I decided to volunteer with the Amuwo Odofin Primary Healthcare Centre because it is not advisable staying at home doing nothing.”

One the foundation members, Mrs Esther Odanye, 87, said that participating in the group’s activities had helped her remain active.

“As I do the exercises and all we’re asked to do are to obey the rules and people tell me I look younger than my age.
“I want to be active at all times. When I’m sick and they say I should be on bed rest. I say, ‘No’ and the doctor will say, `Mama, take it easy’, ‘’she said.

NAN reports that walking for 30 minutes daily is recommended for seniors and people of all ages.
According to a health website,, a brisk walk can help individuals lead a happier and healthier life well into old age.

“It is very important as you get older to stay active. “Maintaining your muscle mass and flexibility goes a long way in keeping you healthy and independent.
“It will also greatly reduce the need for a walker or other type or walking aid,” it said

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