The Siel Bleu Association, who are we?

Siel Bleu is encouraging, motivating and above all makes physical exercise enjoyable and achievable

-Bridie Corkey, participant, Ireland

One of the greatest successes of western society is that our population is living longer, however living longer does not necessarily mean that we are living full independent lifestyles.

The Siel Bleu Association is a health care charity, improving the lives of older adults through fun and interactive, tailored exercise programmes in four European countries.

Established in France in 1997, Siel Bleu has over 18 years experiences helping to develop a solution to promote proactive ageing for our older populations. The Association offers older adults a range of “triple impact” physical activity programmes; no matter a person’s age or physical ability, we have a programme that will improve their physical capabilities, increase their social inclusion and accelerate psychological happiness.

Our programmes emphasise the importance of prevention, using unique exercises and physical training to delay the onset of age-related impairment and disease. Just as importantly we help older adults to maintain their ability to function independently and retain the social connections that have defined them for most of their lives.

Two sports science students from the University of Strasbourg pioneered the concept of physical activity as a preventative therapy for older adults. Determined to find a solution to inactive ageing, Jean Daniel Muller and Jean Michel Ricard used their studies to develop a programme of physical activity for nursing home residents. The pair piloted their concept in 12 nursing homes across Strasbourg; after 6 months the results were obvious and Siel Bleu was born. The charity scaled rapidly across France and as of 2015 Siel Bleu is providing their physical activity programmes in nearly half French nursing homes.

As social entrepreneurs, Siel Bleu wanted to share their solution to inactive ageing. They created the Siel Bleu Association and began to cross boarders in 2009 in to Belgium, 2010 into Ireland and Spain in 2011.

At Siel Bleu we strive to make our programmes both accessible and affordable to everyone who wants to benefit from exercise. As such we utilise Adapted Physical Activities, which are designed specifically for those who cannot participate in traditional “one size fits all” physical activity classes for any number of physical, cognitive or social reasons. Adapted Physical Activities are considered to be a preventative therapeutic solution and by using these activities we are helping to make the shift away from curative and medical solutions.

Our group physical activity programmes are specifically designed to meet the needs, abilities and goals of older adults in nursing homes, in communities and in their own homes. Siel Bleu’s highly skilled and educated trainers deliver our programmes which are designed based on the dependency levels of the participants and address common issues faced by older adults, including but not restricted to risk of falls, dementia, Parkinson’s, COPD, Arthritis. Siel Bleu trainers focus on creating a fun environment which encourages participation and interactive while improving participants’ flexibility, strength, agility and confidence.

We also believe in making our programmes affordable because being healthy should be a right and not a luxury. And such we only charge a nominal fee for our programmes that covers the cost of our trainers, insurance and travel costs.

For more information on the Siel Bleu Association visit www.sielbleu.com