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Putting exercise at the heart of good health

It's often said that good health is everything and for one leading Moorlands councillor that message took on a personal meaning earlier this year.

Councillor Brian Johnson, who is the cabinet member for sport and leisure at Staffordshire Moorlands District Council, suffered a mild heart attack in May and now has a stent fitted as a result.

As part of his recovery he is taking part in a 12-week cardiac programme at Biddulph Valley Leisure Centre and had his first session last week.

Councillor Johnson said: "I don't think we can underestimate the role that exercise plays in keeping us healthy in so many different ways - something that has been brought home to me in a very personal way this year.

"I'm fortunate in that I received excellent care at the time of my heart attack and am recovering well but I know that my continued good health depends on my actions and choices which is why I'm taking part in this cardiac programme.

"Our leisure centres in the Moorlands offer a wide range of exercise options and classes - as well as this specific, tailored cardiac programme - so there will be something to suit everyone regardless of your age or ability. Being more active has so many benefits and I would strongly encourage people to find out what's happening at their local leisure centre and get involved."

The cardiac programme is available on Tuesdays at two of the three Moorlands leisure centres - Biddulph Valley, and Brough Park in Leek.

The programme, which is delivered by the North Staffordshire Health Authority in partnership with the Staffordshire Moorlands leisure centre operator, Parkwood Community Leisure, supports people who have had cardiac related conditions. It adopts a rehabilitation philosophy to get people back on their feet and into their daily routine.

Patients have weekly 1 to 1 sessions with cardiac specialists who design a tailored exercise programme to suit every individual need.

Once the 12-week programme with the cardiac team comes to an end, the qualified Parkwood Community Leisure team are then able to deliver the next phase of the programme, encouraging individuals to continue with regular exercise beyond the rehabilitation programme.