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  • Supporting people to contribute and do things they enjoy

Oomph Promoting wellbeing for older people through exercise and activities

Organisation (name and purpose)

Oomph! Wellness is a social enterprise on a mission to help older adults live a full life. Oomph! has worked in care settings since 2011 to train and support staff to enhance the mental, physical and emotional wellbeing of older adults across the UK. Working in both care homes and community settings - such as retirement villages, sheltered housing and day centres - Oomph! aims to positively change the impact of ageing.

What is the innovation this problem solves?

Britain is getting older. But our ageing population is having a big impact on services, society and, most importantly, the individual. 11.8 million people are over 65 in the UK, and there's a £1billion cost of inactivity on the NHS. 40% of over 65s have a limiting longstanding illness. This doesn't even touch upon the growing levels of social isolation amongst older adults and the impact on their mental health. Oomph! aims to not only improve the physical mobility of older adults, but also their mental and emotional wellbeing, as these can be overlooked in many care settings. 


Oomph! provides a range of services to solve these problems and ensure that older adults in care settings have the best possible quality of life.

Staff are trained to deliver chair based exercise sessions to residents, which is not only hugely cost effective by reducing the need for external suppliers, but also more importantly, gives residents access to more frequent, regular physical activity classes. By making these social, fun and engaging, and introducing gameplay, competition and adaptations of well known sports, residents will want to come to the classes, and keep coming.

In care homes Oomph! also provide activity training as part of the package so that teams in homes are supported to provide residents with balanced, varied and person-centered wellbeing planners, that are in line with CQC guidelines. This means that residents can continue to do the activities that they are passionate about.

Evidence base

Evaluation at Bournemouth University is underway to measure the physical and psychological effects of Oomph!, which takes a whole systems wellness approach for older people living in care homes. An evaluation study is also underway, led by Dr Will Young at Brunel University to evaluate the efficacy of community exercise classes organised by Oomph!.

Expected impact

In 2017/18 Oomph! trained 3,453 members of staff in care homes.  99% of staff who were asked said that they saw an improvement in the home's overall wellbeing provision. 98% said it supported wellbeing leads in their roles, and 95% said it enabled the wider team to get involved. Importantly, 98% said it had a positive impact on residents. In community settings. 322 members of staff were trained, and Oomph! expects to get thousands of over 55s from unactive to active in 2 years as part of the Sport England Active Ageing Initiative. Oomph! are expecting to see even more impact in 2018/19 as the organisation continues to grow. 


Oomph! operates across the UK, all the way from the Shetland Isles to the Isle of Wight. We are working with over 110 care group clients and over 23 community clients. 

What would council/health organisations/local areas need to do or have in place to enable it to develop?

In order for Oomph! to be successful, there needs to be an "Oomph! Champion" in the organisation who will take accountability for the programme. This means that there is someone in place to work with Oomph! to arrange initial training, and continually monitor the ongoing success of the programme

What would kill it?

Some organisations find that without a lead member of staff monitoring and nurturing the programme it can limit the impact that is felt from the training.

All team members who will be engaging with the programme need to be briefed, and communication is vital. Equally, there needs to be the budget or funding in place to implement the programme, and to keep implementing this year on year for optimum, continued, impact. 

Where to go for more information

Please email hello@oomph-wellness.org or call 0203 601 6363 for more information. Or for an overview of Oomph!, visit www.oomph-wellness.org