Bradford’s TERRY Wassall breathed a huge sigh of relief when he returned to his favorite sport, racketball, just six weeks after undergoing hip replacement surgery.
The 76-year-old admitted his hip was “starting to give him trouble” after constantly hurting, even while walking.
In response, five months ago Wassall decided to have a hip replacement so he could continue his fitness journey, particularly racketball, a sport similar to squash.
He plays with other members of the Bradford u3a Racketball Group – made up of people who are no longer working full time. He is one of 270 members of u3a Bradford who are not all racketeers.
Like the others, he has access to more than 30 groups that the members themselves create and animate. Topics vary from political history, to languages, to restaurants, to creative writing to name a few.
Five months have passed and Wassall is back in action and hoping to reach the standards he has played before.
He said: “The hip surgery did me the world of good because I was in a lot of pain. I felt pain when I walked, and obviously I felt even more pain when I played Racketball. It meant I couldn’t play.
“I had the operation about five months ago now and the recovery pains are there but of course it’s temporary. I started walking without a stick again after four weeks and was back on the squash courts after six weeks, just slightly.
“I feel like I’ve recovered well and I’m slowly returning to my original Racketball standards which were set before my hip setback about three years ago.
“I think a big part of my quick recovery is the fact that I’ve always enjoyed fitness, whether it’s cycling, walking, squash and/or racketeering as I got older.
“This base level of fitness seriously helped me get back on my feet quickly. I spoke to people in the hospital at the time of my operation and they said it can take a long time to recover. fully recover from hip replacements, and some not at all, so I’m extremely lucky by the way.”
Wassall has been playing Racketball at Bradford for ten years and during that time it has brought him enormous joy, not only physically but also mentally.
He said: “Our group u3a Racketball is a fantastic concept. Everyone in the group is between 60 and 70 years old, and while it helps if you’ve played a bit of squash before, it doesn’t matter. as the group is catered for all abilities.
“It’s a sport that helps you move and stay active, so for that reason alone it’s fantastic. It’s also a lot of fun.
“But we have a number of members in our group and because of that we can use it as a way to socialize and get out of the house.
“It is vitally important that groups and initiatives like this continue to work for older people as it helps prevent more cases of bedridden patients. We have an aging population which creates more workload for the NHS and care homes.
“And I think exercise is a great way to make sure we can live longer and healthier lives, so it’s crucial that groups like u3a continue to operate across the country.”
If you want to get fit like Wassall, meet new people and hear great talks, everything you need to know is on the website at: bradfordu3ahttps://u3asites.org.uk/bradford/home