'Inspirational' Abersychan man, 99, still going to the gym

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A TORFAEN pensioner has been hailed an “inspiration” to fitness fanatic for regularly attending a cardiovascular and strength training class – despite being 99-years-old.

Ronald Prince, from Abersychan, takes part in the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) class of the National Exercise Referral Scheme (NERS) in Pontypool every Wednesday.

Class instructors, at Pontypool Active Living Centre, Lisa O’Connor and Mary Thurston called Mr Prince, who celebrated his birthday last month, “mobile and capable” for his age, with a “great set of lungs”.

Ms O’Connor said: “It is a light circuit class but Ron, who has been coming for over a year, is here without fail every week and participates fully. He is independent, and a highly valued member of the class.”

The class covers light weight lifting, aerobics and yoga, as well as participants using a punching bag.

Mr Prince is the oldest participant, which caters from those aged 17 and up. “It will for 17 year-olds to 100-year-olds after his birthday next year,” Ms Thurston joked.

Torfaen national referral scheme co-ordinator Owen Thomas said he was an inspiration to anyone lacking motivation.

“It’s a great message, especially for younger users,” he added.

Mr Prince, who takes a taxi to and from each session, as well as tending to a 1,000 sq metre garden at home said the scheme has helped him “greatly” with his rehabilitation following a stroke two years ago.

“I really enjoy it and the instructors are some of the best you could ask for,” he said.

The scheme provides quality and varied exercise opportunities for Torfaen residents, with a medical condition.

Cwmbran Stadium and Pontypool Active Living Centre deliver

Cwmbran Stadium and PALC deliver the scheme, with a focus on supervised activity to improve health and wellbeing

For details visit torfaenleisuretrust.co.uk

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