Advice to keep you healthy in the days ahead

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In this sponsored post, “CityNews” speaks with the health experts and organisations passionate about keeping you healthy in the midst of a crisis. 

IT’S important to stay healthy during the face of the coronavirus pandemic, but with social distancing measures, crowd limits and medicine restrictions, staying healthy might look a little different than normal.

This week “CityNews” speaks with passionate health experts, organisations and businesses who have ideas or measures put in place to keep Canberrans moving
and healthy.

Sale encourages outdoor movement

WITH restrictions on being indoors in large groups, now’s the perfect time to get on a bike, says Cookies Cycles’ owner David Cook.

David says he’s offering a 30 per cent off storewide sale on his large range of skateboards, scooters and bikes until April 9, to encourage Canberrans to get back on to two wheels and in the fresh air.

And he’ll look after old bikes, too, so if people have bikes that need a service, they can bring them in to be checked over.

“We want to help people get outside and on their bikes, as it’s a great way to keep up fitness levels during this health crisis,” says David, who’s been in the industry for 35 years, and opened the shop in September 2015 to cater for the family cyclist.

“We’ve got folding electric bikes, low step and flat bar, and kits that you can use to convert your current bike into an electric bike.”

He says they also have a large range of parts and accessories for all the products they sell.

Cookies Cycles stocks everything from balance bikes and three-wheel scooters for the little ones, up to larger scooters to skateboards, mountain bikes, electric bikes and road bikes, BMX bikes for the racer as well as street and park riders, he says.

Cookies Cycles, 227 Flemington Road, Franklin. Call 6242 0338, email or visit

Kristen’s ‘safe’ way of walking

NORDIC Walking is the perfect solution to staying active and healthy during this pandemic, says Kristen Pratt of Capital Nordic Walking.

“It ticks all the boxes – you’re outside in the fresh air, away from crowds, the only item you have contact with is your own Nordic Walking poles, and you walk a good metre or two apart from others,” says Kristen.

“One of the important benefits is that your immune system receives a boost from regular exercise, strengthening your ability to fight infection.”

Kristen, who’s an occupational therapist and qualified Nordic walking and fitness instructor, says Australians of all ages and fitness levels, including people with health challenges, are catching on to the fitness regime that has been keeping Scandinavian skiers trim since the 1930s.

“More people are taking to the great outdoors to try their hands (and arms and legs and back and abs!) at Nordic Walking,” she says.

“Millions of people globally are enjoying terrific results – including toning more than 90 per cent of the muscles in the body – double that of walking, jogging, and cycling, increased cardiovascular workout, and higher calorie burn.

“It also significantly reduces the load and strain on ankle, knee, and hip joints, strengthens core, improves posture, and can ease back and neck pain.

“Check out Capital Nordic Walking’s Autumn courses to find one that matches your needs. There’s something for everyone.”

Capital Nordic Walking. Email, call 0499 993215, or visit

Classes run strong with strict measures in place

ARTHRITIS ACT is implementing one-on-one classes and virtual meetings to support people who are isolated during this time, says CEO Rebecca Davey.

“We are concerned about people’s mental health, particularly as many of our people are already isolated,” she says.

“For people feeling isolated we are happy to meet on a one-to-one basis, or via video conferencing. We are also commencing video conferencing social groups from March 30. Please contact us to receive a link to join these sessions.”

Although Australia (and the world) is facing a pandemic, Rebecca says people still have to deal with arthritis and pain, and as coronavirus is likely to be an ongoing situation for a while, they still want to offer support.

“We are looking at implementing telehealth services, and exercise classes online with us are now available,” she says.

“We can also arrange appointments with various health practitioners online if someone needs it.”

Rebecca says many of their people are immune compromised, which presents an extra risk.

“Try to avoid situations where you’re in contact with potentially lots of people, like grocery shopping,” she says.

“We suggest ordering groceries online or getting someone to shop for you.”

Arthritis ACT, Building 18, 170 Haydon Drive, Bruce. Call 1800 011041, email or visit

Diabetics urged to not stockpile medicine

Natalie Smith.

PEOPLE living with diabetes are urged not to purchase more medicines than they need at this time, according to Natalie Smith, the ACT general manager of Diabetes NSW & ACT.

“Those with diabetes are advised to order their National Diabetes Service Scheme (NDSS) products and diabetes medicines as usual. Nothing has changed,” says Natalie.

The Australian Government has advised there’s no national shortage of NDSS products or insulin or other diabetes-related medicines.

“Accessing more NDSS products than usual may affect your annual product limits. There is no need to stockpile,” according to Diabetes NSW & ACT.

Across Australia there are in excess of 1.3 million people living with diabetes, with more than 18,000 people living with diabetes in the ACT. These numbers are growing, with about 280 people diagnosed with diabetes every day across Australia, says Diabetes NSW & ACT, which is why the organisation is proud to support the community through raising awareness, screening, support and education.

Diabetes NSW & ACT says it’s here to support the community living with diabetes throughout this health emergency.

“For additional advice or support, call our helpline on 1300 136588, or contact the NDSS helpline on 1800 637700 or contact our ACT office 6248 4500,” says Natalie.

Diabetes NSW & ACT, Level 1, 101 Northbourne Avenue.
Call 62484500, email or visit

Lanette puts Pilates classes online

AS a way to respond to the current coronavirus crisis, owner of Pilates Canberra Lanette Gavran says she has created an online platform for her Pilates students and trainers.

“We’re trying to respond in a way that’s appropriate while still keeping people moving,” she says.

“Some of our students are at more risk than others, so we’ve created an online platform with pre-recorded classes, so they can still access the content from home.”

Lanette, who runs a registered training organisation (RTO) for training other instructors, has a team of 12 teachers who are all passionate about Pilates.

“Our Pilates instructors can also hook in with their student in real time, one-on-one or in small groups, and using small props if possible,” she says.

Lanette says the studio is still running, and that it’s always been a safe, contained environment with extremely high hygiene standards.

“However, we are going the extra mile to ensure that everyone is aware of the current restrictions and protocol around sanitation,” she says.

Lanette established Pilates Canberra 25 years ago, and says that Pilates training can help improve strength, flexibility and balance.

“It’s important that we keep moving during these unusual times,” she says.

“Pilates is a very different way of moving the body, and can help it to move organically, creating new habits that prevent injury.”

Pilates Canberra, 14 Macquarie Street, Barton. Call 0412 022917, email or visit


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