"I do tai chi because it helps me feel strong, balanced and it lifts my mood too.”

By Patricia, 63, from City Centre, Liverpool

Patricia used tai chi and dance as a way to ease her recovery from stress. Doing these activities regularly helps her feel calmer, stronger and more alert. Plus, she didn’t start until she was 52, so it’s never too late to join in.

When she was younger Patricia used to have a lot of trouble with stress; she wasn’t looking after herself holistically and often found it difficult to stay healthy and find balance in her busy life.

After having a go at tai chi and Nia Fusion Fitness – a form of dance and martial arts - she felt like they could be the right fit for her. These activities were calming, as well as energising and fun, all at the same time, something that really appealed to Patricia.

Patricia knows from experience how being more active can help ease mental health problems such as stress and depression. Even being diagnosed with breast cancer hasn’t stopped her; being active and following a healthier diet has really helped with her recovery. Patricia now feels fitter and stronger on all levels, and more in control of her health, which has a positive impact on her emotions and her life.

Being more active has also given her the opportunity to meet lots of people in her local community, make new friends and have a good laugh.

Patricia’s life changed for the better when she took up tai chi and Nia, so now she’s really keen to help encourage other people of all ages, shapes and sizes to start enjoying all the benefits of being more active.

Patricia’s advice: “Starting with a positive attitude is very important. Rather than thinking about what you can’t do, focus on what you can. Start where you are and take one step at a time. Sometimes the battle is often in our minds, but if you start small, keep going and believe you can, then you may be surprised at what you are able to achieve.”