Exercise group helping people living with Multiple Sclerosis

A Ballymena based group is helping local people living with Multiple Sclerosis through the medium of exercise.

The local MS exercise group pictured with former Mayor, Cllr Audrey Wales.

All Saints Parish Centre on the town’s Cushendall Road is the venue for the ‘MS Active Together’ Group every Thursday morning from 11am-12noon.

Jean Gardiner, who lives in Ballymena with her husband Harry and who joined the Ballymena group in 2014, has spoken out about how the group has helped her manage her multiple sclerosis in the hope it will inspire others with the condition

to get active.

Jean was diagnosed with MS in 1985 after losing vision in her left eye. Raising a young family at the time Jean struggled with balance problems and weakness in her arms and legs. Jean’s symptoms have been steady and she sometimes needs to use a walking stick to help with mobility.

Jean said: “I really love attending the class as we all have a good laugh; I’ve met so many new friends. We do lots of activities such as curling, ten pin bowling, seated dancing and lots of stretching exercises”.

The MS Society’s Ballymena group has been running the exercise class as part of their Get Active initiative for more than two and half years. They started the sessions to provide an easy and accessible way for local people with MS to get

active and the group also provides emotional and financial support, and runs social outings and provides complementary therapies.

Jean added that the group’s services and exercise classes are open to anyone affected by MS in the community.