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Northern Ireland Assembly member works out at work

13 June 2013 - 5:13pm

In Northern Ireland a politician was put through his paces in Belfast by a physiotherapist to mark Workout at work day (W@WD).


Brendan McConaghy (left) and Jim Wells MLA

Jim Wells, a Member of the Legislative Assembly and vice chair of the Northern Ireland Assembly health committee, met Brendan McConaghy, lead physiotherapist in occupational health for Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, at the Parliament Buildings.

Mr McConaghy helped Mr Wells to perform some simple desk-based exercises, showed him some activities to improve posture and explained the importance of physical activity in the workplace.

‘Our main focus was to raise the profile of occupational health physiotherapy in regards to health at work,’ said Mr McConaghy.

‘So it was good to meet with someone of influence and raise awareness of the role physiotherapy plays in occupational health, in terms of the advice we can give about healthy behaviours at work.

‘I also wanted to put the message across that we’re not designed to be sitting down all day, and that stretches, correct posture and maintaining an active lifestyle can all help to keep musculoskeletal conditions at bay.’ 

Raising awareness

Mr McConaghy added that Mr Wells seemed very receptive to the message of W@WD and understood the part physiotherapy can play in maintaining the health and wellbeing of staff.

Tom Sullivan, the CSP policy officer for Northern Ireland, who helped to organise the event, said he had been ‘delighted by the response from our politicians and their support for Workout at work day’.

Later in the day, Brendan Herron, an occupation health physiotherapist for Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, led a group of Northern Ireland Ambulance Service employees on a brisk walk around the Belfast City Hospital site. The objective was to raise awareness of the importance of building activity into a normal working day, he explained.

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