24 June 2016 3 min read

Stockland and Bowls Australia will work together to boost the health and wellbeing of more than 11,000 residents living in Stockland retirement villages across the country. The new partnership, is designed to encourage residents to participate in social and competitive lawn bowls, coaching clinics, and free health and wellbeing seminars.

Anna Learmonth​, General Manager Retirement Living, said, "This is all ​about encouraging happier, healthier, more active residents at all of our villages. Research shows that regular physical activity for retirees is the key to maintaining good health and vitality and one of the most effective ways to improve emotional wellbeing. We want to encourage our residents to get involved, keep fit, stay connected and be a part of something they can enjoy in a group. Bowls offers all of that."

The official launch of the program took place at our Mernda Retirement Village and saw Commonwealth Games bronze medallist and Australian Jackaroo, Barrie Lester, lead a coaching clinic for residents, which will continue to be rolled out by other bowls personalities as part of our three year partnership. We were also joined onsite by Danielle Green MP, Member for Yan Yean.

Recent research from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows people aged 65 and over have the lowest participation rate in physical activity nationally, at 47 per cent, as well as the lowest rate of involvement in organised sport, at 17 per cent.

Bowls Australia CEO, Neil Dalrymple, said: “Bowls is a fantastic form of physical activity for older Australians. It encourages the full breadth of muscle movement, the enjoyment of being in the outdoors as well as socialisation in a group environment. Playing social or competitive bowls has been found to have a number of physical and mental health benefits that increases happiness of senior Australians. The sport also facilitates long lasting friendships that are often a central feature of the social support network for older people who may have lost their partner.”