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Eyes down for Age Scotland’s revamped Body Boosting Bingo

BBB launch April 2024

6 May 2024

Age Scotland’s most popular wellbeing activity is being relaunched with a new edition featuring more accessible exercises to help counter the long-term effects of Covid lockdowns in older people.

Body Boosting Bingo, which made its debut in 2017, is a game of bingo with a twist in which numbers are called and players score them off on their bingo cards, aiming to get a line to win. The twist is that for each of the possible 30 numbers there is an associated movement to build strength or balance. The movements can be done seated or standing.
In Age Scotland’s 2023 Big Survey, when older people were asked if they were very satisfied with their balance, just 19% of respondents in their 60s and 70s said they were. Asked about their muscle strength, 10% of those in their 60s said they were very satisfied and 9% of those in their 70s. Loss of balance and muscle strength were two of the areas of concern among health professionals for older people who shielded throughout the pandemic lockdowns.
The 2024 version of Body Boosting Bingo, with new demonstration videos and inclusive subtitles in Punjabi and Cantonese as well as English, was devised with input from academics to keep the exercises in line with the latest evidence on the best physical activities for older adults.

Age Scotland received advice from Dawn Skelton, Professor of Ageing and Health at Glasgow Caledonia University, and Dr Simone Tomaz, lecturer in Exercise Physiology at Stirling University, to help refresh movements in the game to maximise the benefits they can bring to older people.

Katherine Crawford, chief executive officer of Age Scotland, said:

“We’re delighted to unveil the new improved Body Boosting Bingo, which is by far our most popular activity for older people. Not only does Body Boosting Bingo get people moving, with accessible and beneficial movements, but those taking part are guaranteed plenty of laughs.

“There is a serious side to the game too. As people grow older, it is more important than ever to maintain and improve strength and balance. By taking part in activities like Body Boosting Bingo, older people can reduce their risk of falls, which is the number one cause of hospital admissions among older age groups.

“I’m sure the new sessions will prove as popular as the original version, and many more older people across the country will enjoy the benefits of a Body Boosting Bingo session.”
Dr Simone Tomaz said:

“Everyone, and especially older people, benefit greatly from being physically active and doing strength training that is both fun, social, and inclusive. The GOALD team at the University of Stirling have been delighted to bring our expertise in physical activity and strength training promotion to Body Boosting Bingo, that will hopefully impact the health and wellbeing for older people across Scotland."

Graham Sinclair and Rashpal Nottay, two of the models filmed for the demonstration video, have shared how much they enjoyed the experience.

Graham said: “We had a super time filming the Body Boosting Bingo videos – it was enjoyable, interesting and fun.”
Rashpal said: “I have been regularly exercising and jogging for my entire life, and have always noticed the significant impact it has on my wellbeing. Participating in the Body Boosting Bingo filming was thoroughly enjoyable.”