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People have more confidence to manage their musculoskeletal conditions thanks to exercise programme

24 October 2022

  • Working in partnership

Twelve people from across Morecambe Bay have been attending an exercise programme at Kendal Leisure Centre to help them to cope with osteoarthritis (chronic joint pain) of the knee and hip and initial feedback has been positive.  

The Enabling Self-management and Coping with Arthritic Pain using Exercise (ESCAPE-pain) programme is aimed at people over 45 years old.  

People attend 12 one-hour sessions, twice a week, over a six-week period. The sessions involved a 15-minute talk which includes educational self-management and coping strategies, followed by a 45-minute exercise programme individualised for each person.  

The sessions are led by Healthwise Facilitators at Kendal Leisure Centre and are supported by the Integrated Musculoskeletal (iMSK) Service.  

Participant feedback has included: 

  • “I feel more confident with my balance and have found my conditions a lot easier to live with. I am happy to carry on exercising as it has made my condition easier to control and my life easier to live.” 
  • “I have met my early goals and would now like to push on to improve my strength and balance to return to fell walking and cycling which I believe with Danii’s help I will achieve.” 

Caroline Smith, Communities Manager for Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) South Lakes & Copeland, said: “Our four Healthwise Facilitators who run the sessions have had some great feedback from everyone who has attended.  

“The ESCAPE-pain programme really helps people to understand their conditions and how they can cope better with pain through exercise. Attendees have also benefited from peer support and meeting new people - it has been lovely to see people grow in confidence and new friendships form.” 

GPs, Consultants and other Healthcare Professionals refer people to the iMSK service for assessment. The iMSK physiotherapist will identify people who would benefit from the ESCAPE-Pain programme.  

John Butterworth, Integrated Care Manager for University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Following really positive feedback from the participants and the facilitators there are plans for further ESCAPE-pain sessions, the next of which begins in Ulverston on Tuesday 25 October.” 

The ESCAPE-pain programme was developed by Professor Mike Hurley and was originally devised for people with knee osteoarthritis. More information can be found at the following link https://escape-pain.org/   

For more information or queries about the iMSK sessions contact the Better Health Team (Kendal) at  BetterHealthKendal@GLL.ORG or Better Health Team (Ulverston) at BetterHealthUlverston@GLL.ORG

Morecambe Bay’s iMSK Service moved its Kendal base from Westmorland General Hospital to Kendal Leisure Centre earlier this year. The collaborative approach between the iMSK service and the leisure centre is part of the Local Government Associations’ One Public Estate initiative. This initiative supports locally-led partnerships of public sector bodies to collaborate around their service delivery strategies and estate needs – in this case bringing health and leisure closer together on one site for the benefit of patients.  

You can find out more about the iMSK service here https://www.uhmb.nhs.uk/our-services/services/community-integrated-musculoskeletal-imsk-service