When 72-year-old Half Moon Bay resident John Daniell crushed both legs in a Segway accident, he thought he would never walk again, but 26 months later he has thrown away his wheelchair and found a new lease on life at his local gym, Marina Fitness.
“I couldn’t walk without the aid of crutches. I had very limited movement on one leg and had to wear a full leg brace every day,” he says.
Although he could barely move, John was determined not to be stuck in a chair for the rest of his life. After working with Marina Physio, he was referred to Auckland Council-owned Marina Fitness as part of his rehabilitation.
“Today I’m free and agile on my own!” he says.
“I almost see the injury as a blessing in disguise, because if I hadn’t injured my legs I wouldn’t have met so many wonderful people here at Marina Fitness. It’s truly such a great community we have going here. And best of all, I feel fitter, healthier and stronger than ever before.”
John’s advice to others is to come to the gym and get moving.
“If you want to simply improve your health and general quality of life, try it for yourself. You’ll feel better for it and you won’t regret it.”
Marina Fitness manager Matt Nash says John is an inspiration to older people in the community faced with injuries that could reduce their quality of life.
“John’s a star. He came to us initially because we welcome everyone regardless of ability. Marina Fitness is a completely accessible centre with disabled access changing rooms. We developed a tailored programme for John, as we do for all our members, and he has stuck with it all the way. Now we can’t get him to slow down.”
Auckland Council owns and operates 41 leisure centres throughout Auckland. To find out more about Marina Fitness and other council-run centres across Auckland, visit aucklandleisure.co.nz.