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How local businesses are coping and adapting Will ascends Slovenia’s highest mountain CBD oil; the myths and mysteries How are athletes coping with lockdown A riot of colour in your garden; how to build borders with flowers I S S U E 96 | J U N E 2020

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Editor and Publisher ary Bremner mary@theactivemag.com Deputy editor ate axim kate@theactivemag.com Art editor

att Tarrant

Contributors Will etherington, eremy mithson Beswick, Advertisement Sales Director isa Chauhan lisa@theactivemag.com Production assistant ary Curtis Accounts accounts@theactivemag.com Active magazine, Eventus Business Centre, Sunderland Road, Northfield Industrial Estate, Market Deeping, PE6 8FD If you have information about a club then please get in touch by emailing editor theactivemag.com. If you would like to stock Active maga ine please email distribution theactivemag. com. Active maga ine is published monthly times per year. I



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Copyright (c) Triangle Publishing td (TP ) 0 . All rights reserved. o part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, or be stored in any retrieval system, of any nature, without prior permission from TP . Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of TP or its a liates. Disclaimer of iability. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the uality and accuracy of the information contained in this publication at the time of going to press, TP and its a liates assume no responsibility as to the accuracy or completeness of and, to the extent permitted by law, shall not be liable for any errors or omissions or any loss, damage or expense incurred by reliance on information or any statement contained in this publication. Advertisers are solely responsible for the content of the advertising material which they submit and for ensuring the material complies with applicable laws. TP and its a liates are are not responsible for any error, omission or inaccuracy in any advertisement and will not be liable for any damages arising from any use of products or services or any action or omissions taken in reliance on information or any statement contained in advertising material. Inclusion of any advertisement is not intended to endorse any view expressed, nor products or services offered nor the organisations sponsoring the advertisement.

“Thank you to every one of these hardworking businesses.” THANKFULLY AS I write the sun is shining so being confined to our homes is not too bad for some of us. I am lucky to be able to enjoy my garden, which I must say is looking rather good, it’s had so much attention over the last goodness knows how many weeks But I am delighted that we are all now able to start to emerge from our tunnels (like the mole on our front cover) and reconnect with the outside world. ven if it is only baby steps initially. This doesn’t mean we have all been in hibernation though. I am incredibly impressed by the way many businesses, mainly independents, have tapped into their entrepreneurial spirit and turned their businesses around to allow them to continue trading during the lockdown. Of course, needs must and it’s been a matter of survival but survive they have with many thriving. And in so doing have offered a tremendous service to us all. roceries have been delivered, wine too along with delicious takeaways gratefully received. Clothes shops have gone online so we’ve been able to buy clothes even if that is mainly leggings and shorts. And enterprising garden centres mean we have been able to buy plants and vegetables for our gardens. Thank you to every one of these hardworking businesses. I am going to make sure that I keep supporting them and I hope you all will too. It doesn’t look like we are going to be able to head abroad anytime soon. o in the meantime enjoy Will’s piece about climbing ount Triglav in lovenia. One to be added to the bucket list, but sadly not mine as I do not have a head for heights and would never have made it. We’ve all been trying our best to keep fit and active, even if the main activity is heading to the fridge. eremy has been finding out how professional athletes have been coping and the way they have been trying to keep their fitness levels up is interesting and hilarious indeed. Read his roundup pages to find out but I would suggest some of the activities not be tried at home opefully over the next few weeks the dreaded virus can be kept under control and we can all start emerging slightly further from our tunnels, sit on our molehills and wave at each other and who knows actually share a molehill, at a suitable distance of course. Mary





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June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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Orbea Gain: E.Bike in disguise

GEORGE HALLS CYCLE CENTRE 10-12 Northampton Road, Market Harborough, Leics, LE16 9HE. 01858 465507 www.georgehallscycles.co.uk georgehallscycle@aol.com

I S S U E 96 / J U NE 2020




Local news updates


Entrepreneurial business owners have managed to change track and keep trading


A delicious seasonal strawberry tart


ow to build borders with flowers


Grab a pencil and paper or your camera



Will heads up Mt Triglav in Slovenia


CBD oil, the panacea of all evils?


Enjoy the second part of recognising different walkers



Physiotherapists have been on the frontline with Covid-19 patients, Sarah Babbs tells us more


Meet some more mature athletes who have risen to the challenge


How athletes - amateur and professional are keeping fit and competitive

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Tugby Orchards, Tugby, LE7 9WE I 0116 259 8063 I www.cafe-ventoux.cc By bike follow the Route 64 Cycle way

Shop online now: https://irisandviolet.shop Or visit us at: 31 St Mary’s Street Stamford PE9 2DS

Cafe Ventoux is now a grocery store supplying local produce including fruit and veg, dairy and a selection of meats. We are also making our own bread, pies, special occasion cakes and much more. We have an extensive home made take away menu too - Wednesday is international cuisine night, Thursday is curry night followed on Friday and Saturday with our homemade pizza and burger menu. If you would like to pre order for collection please just give us a call during opening hours. OPENING HOURS Monday - Wednesday 9-1pm Thursday - Friday 9 - 1pm and 5 - 8pm (takeaway) Saturday 9-2 and 5 - 8pm (takeaway) Sunday 9-2

Country Inn and Restaurant A warm welcome is assured at our quintessential old English county pub, bringing you the best of British home cooked meals and a choice of well kept Real Ales.

Why not join us for Sunday Lunch? Choice of 3 roasts all served with the traditional trimmings £11.95 for one course up to £17.95 for three courses

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Farndon Fields Farm Farndon Road Market Harborough LE16 9NP Tel: 01858 464838

Opening Hours Monday to Saturday 8am - 6pm Sunday & Bank Holidays 10am - 4pm



ActiveLife Still open for business; find out how enterprising businesses are adapting and coping Gardening and eco tips | CBD oil, find out more What type of walker are you, part 2 | Local news E DI T E D BY M A RY B R E M N E R

A long way from Lincolnshire p20

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Conservatory too hot in the summer and too cold in winter? Classic have the answer to this problem and you do not even have to change the existing windows/doors, although you can. Structurally very strong which means your new sun room meets full Building Regulation Approval.

visit our showroom 12 St Leonard’s Street, Stamford, Lincs PE9 2HN Open: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm, Sat 9am-3pm

Tel: 01780 654321 Email: sales@classicstamford.co.uk www.classicstamford.co.uk

Active life

Stamford has a new Poet Laureate ROB ELLKS HAS recently been announced as Stamford’s new Poet Laureate. ‘In these trying and unusual times, poetry is a wonderful medium for engaging our mind in a positive fashion and thus support our mental wellbeing,’ he says. More poetry can be found on the Stamford Poetry facebook page.

No Maize Maze DUE TO THE CORONAVIRUS pandemic the Wistow maize will sadly not be open this year as they cannot safely maintain social distancing because of the widths of the paths. The maize design of 2018 is apt at the moment as it celebrates the 70th anniversary of the NHS. Next year they hope to be back up and running.

On Her Majesty’s Service ACTIVE MAGAZINE’S CYCLING contributor, Gary Waterfall, has been commissioned by The Lord Lieutenant of Lincolnshire, Mr Toby Dennis, to be one of his Deputy Lieutenants to assist him in his role as Her Majesty The Queen’s personal representative in Lincolnshire; this follows the Queen’s non-disapproval of the appointment. The role of lord lieutenant dates back to the 1540s where the incumbent had responsibility for raising the local county militias on behalf of the Sovereign. No stranger to serving the Monarchy, Gary takes on the role on retirement from a 34-year career in The Royal Air Force where he was a Red Arrow, Harrier display pilot and led the final ship

formation of the Harrier into its retirement. He was also the deputy command for the Air Security during the 2012 London Olympics, to name a few of his achievements. As is tradition, Gary will discharge his duties wearing his Royal Air Force service dress in the rank of Air Vice-Marshal. “It is an honour to be chosen to serve my home county of Lincolnshire as a Deputy ieutenant. I can think of no finer way to continue to serve Her Majesty now my regular service has finished. I look forward to supporting the Lord Lieutenant wherever I can over the coming years.” And he’ll also still be providing us with cycle routes too; he’s a busy man.

New sustainable fashion house opens STAMFORD-BASED HANNAH SOPHIA specialises in luxury sustainable clothing that can be worn throughout a woman’s life from youth, pregnancy, post-birth and beyond. All products are hand-crafted and ethically made in the UK and are designed to last. www.hannahsophiaengland.com

Stamford Arts Centre exhibition DESPITE BEING CLOSED, Stamford Arts Centre currently offers a uni ue window exhibition of original paintings for the enjoyment of all passers-by. Exhibited in the Arts Café windows, each painting is a 20cm x 20cm original artwork by Stamford based artist Jane Hindmarch. Jane uses oil or acrylic paint on primed wooden board, and in each piece captures a particular seasonal highlight be it carpets of mauve bluebells,

vivid yellow rapeseed fields or swathes of pink campions. Paintings costs £80 each. Jane is supporting other artists in the #ArtistsSupportPledge where 20% of sales during the lockdown period go towards buying artwork from another artist. The exhibition is also available to view online on Instagram and Facebook and Twitter, or emailed directly from the artist. www.janehindmarchart.com

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We’re still here! The government shut us all down on March 23, but some enterprising businesses very quickly adapted so that they were able to keep trading, supporting their local communities at the same time


E ARE ALL having to adapt to the new normal, but none more so than our local businesses, all keen to get back to work and meet their customers again. From social distancing and hand hygiene measures to offering more services online they want to reduce anxiety while customers shop and encourage people to spend locally. We’ve caught up with some of them to see how they are adapting and surviving the Covid pandemic. They have shown themselves to be an enterprising, determined lot. Simon Lewington from Natural Structures in Tur Langton is keen to get back to work building stunning new properties and extensions using natural materials particularly oak, stone and glass. “All our manufacturing can be done within government guidelines but we need to obtain the materials in the first place which was a problem for a while. Merchants are now mostly all open and providing resources so fingers crossed that things lift to allow the economy to get going again even if it’s only a small graduated start to begin with.”


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Active life Susie Archer from Arch Label Agency in Stamford is hoping to open the shop on June 1 with social distancing measures in place. Hand sanitiser will be available. “In the meantime,” she says, “we have loaded every item in the shop onto our website and I am posting on social media every day so we have been able to keep trading. I visit the shop frequently to get orders out. Customers are encouraged to pay over the phone and are welcome to collect from the shop at an arranged time and date. We have traditionally changed the window every Thursday - Covid-19 or no Covid-19 – that is something which will never change! “It is important to support independents and small businesses; it’s going to be tricky coming out of lockdown but it is essential that customers feel safe and welcome and we will do our utmost to ensure that.” A more personalised approach to customer service will be evident and Susie is happy to offer a by appointment only service to customers who would feel more comfortable with such an arrangement.

Stephen Wilkinson from Wilkinson Goldsmiths in Market Harborough has always sprayed door handles and surfaces anyway for basic hygiene purposes but following the easing of lockdown he’ll have a dedicated ultra-sonic tank with disinfectant to soak each piece of jewellery customers try on, or touch, so there should be no chance of cross contamination. He’s been doing some remodelling work for customers during lockdown but his diamond and gems suppliers shut down very quickly so he couldn’t get hold of stones or precious metals. Fortunately no one has recently contacted him regarding engagement rings! He will follow the advice from the National Association of Goldsmiths to make sure he complies with all the guidelines and best practice. In the meantime he’s been having some quality time with his son who starts school in September. Apparently his garden is looking good and his car is very clean!

Julie Smith from The Hatton Arms in Gretton remembers her last customers leaving at 11.30pm on March 20, the doors closing for the foreseeable future and wondering what were she and her husband Neil to do now? Six weeks later, all the housework’s done, the dog is getting bored of walks and they’d like to see someone other than each other, so providing takeaways was the sensible option. Fish and Chip Fridays and Monthly Curry nights have always been popular with their customers so on the menu are beer battered cod or halloumi with chips, homemade tartar sauce and mushy or garden peas on Fridays and a choice of three homemade curries, served with basmati rice and naan on Saturdays. The price is £9.50 for both the curry and fish and chips. Alongside the meals they’ve decided to raise money for the NHS by selling cakes and biscuits. Bookings and payment are taken over the phone to make it all contactless and then pick up is timed in five minute slots so they can keep within social distancing rules. According to Julie “it’s been a lovely way to stay connected to the village and with customers, old and new.” Farndon Fields Farm Shop in Market Harborough is still open as usual, it never shut. Their team is working hard serving customers in the farm shop with social distancing and safety measures in place. The farm shop is well stocked with fresh local produce, meat, milk, bread and much more. They even have locally milled flour for all those bakers. Nicola Stokes says, “we are very proud of the wide variety of locally sourced produce we stock and the support we have had from our suppliers. By shopping local you really make a difference to your community which is especially important at this time.” They are also taking orders over the phone and offering home delivery or car park collection for anyone who needs it.

Tessa Angell from One Way Out Escape Rooms in Oakham is opening her doors again to family members from the same household. Open every day players can choose one of four rooms including Gas Alert, Framed, Puzzle Room and The Lost Traveller. Participants have an hour to solve the clues and escape. Full hygiene precautions are taken, but for people who don’t yet want to leave home Tessa will bring The Lost Traveller to your door. Up to four people can solve the clues to unlock each pocket of the rucksack to find the local traveller it belongs to. She charges £50 per rucksack and you can choose the easy or hard option. The cost for the escape rooms are £40 for 2 people; £50 for 3; £60 for 4; £80 for 8 and 00 for 0 but she has a half price offer running for six weeks after reopening, using the code LAL.

Colin Chalkley from Dog & Field in Harringworth knows how blessed we are in this area with plenty of open space to enjoy the fresh air. He says, even if you’re social distancing it’s still a good time to explore what’s on your doorstep and support small businesses. Dog & Field caters for your beloved canine friends stocking an extensive range of wet, dry and frozen dog foods as well as treats, supplements and training accessories. Their nutritionists are always ready to give advice regarding your pet’s specific needs. Colin explains that, “as well as adopting the government guidelines on safe distancing rules within our shop we understand there are many people, either vulnerable or self-isolating, who still require dog food. With that in mind we’re offering a free delivery service spanning a 10-mile radius stretching from Corby to Oakham, Uppingham to Stamford and everywhere in between. We’re offering delivery slots to suit the customer with pre payment and a doorstep drop off service. Dog & Field is currently operating under the temporary opening times of Monday-Friday 9:00 – 13:00. During these times feel free to pop in or alternatively you can call ahead and arrange a collection time with pre-payment over the phone or contactless payment on collection.

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We offer a carefully hand picked assortment of some of the industry’s leading brands. We are able to offer quality products and competitive prices. Our Raw Feed Range is now available on your doorstep, with brands such as Benyfit Natural and Raw Made Simple.

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We’re open 6 days a week Opening Hours:

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Mob: 07738 272474 Website: www.stamfordyoga.co.uk Email: info@stamfordyoga.co.uk


Active life

Before the lock down, Murano Silver in Stamford was solely a bricks and mortar business. Molly Clegg, owner of the business didn’t think a website would benefit her as they sell so many one off pieces so initially the new measures totally wiped out trade She quickly resolved this by beginning to sell through their social media platforms. We have increased the amount of posts we share to Instagram and acebook says olly, and we don’t charge postage for any items sent out. We can also include gift wrapping and a card so if you’re buying something as a gift, we can send it directly to the recipient. They have also brought forward the launch of their in-house brand ‘Connie Bear.’ Originally scheduled to launch in late spring early summer, the lockdown gave olly some extra time to finish making the designs and building the website, so that is now online too. Next door to Murano Silver is Iris and Violet who have only just turned a year old, so having to close their doors and stop trading was really daunting. A transactional website had been in the pipeline for a long time but getting through a full year of trading first was always their main focus. Lockdown gave them time to get this up and running and it has been really successful. They’ve been delivering orders to customers within tamford but also sending out parcels all over the country. It has also allowed time to source some new exciting brands which will be in the shop and online over the next few months.

Coming out of lockdown and with society settling into a different kind of normality when the shop re opens, changes have been made to make the shop safe for employees and customers. Hand sanitising units are in place which customers will be asked to use upon entering the shop and there will also be arrows on the floor directing customers around the store. A Perspex screen has been installed on the shop counter and there will be a limit on the number of people in the shop as well as enhanced cleaning procedures in the store and regular steaming of garments. They look forward to seeing you all soon.

pring 0 0 has not allowed the many antique and interior fairs and restoration demonstrations The Rug Studio in Stamford had planned. But this has not stopped them from continuing the many restoration projects they had in hand plus virtual consultations for clients’ redecorating projects, or uotes for restoration jobs. The good weather has meant fantastic opportunities for cleaning the rugs and the sunshine helps to insure against the hatching of moth eggs, so there’s been lots of positives. Online they have been working incredibly hard behind the scenes with a renewed presence on Pinterest, tsy and interior which all helps to direct people to their website which continues to be updated each week. Their email circulars show great examples of work already completed by the studio be it fitting of rugs on stairs and half landings, restoration projects they’ve solved and sales projects they’ve carried out to find the right rug for their customers. To subscribe, look at the website and follow them on social media. veryone needs a rug, as they certainly cheer up a room

Simon and Julie Tee from Stamford-based Bamboo Feet have also been working hard selling online. They have a huge stock of spring summer socks and underwear for men and women as well as leggings, cami tops and t shirts – all made of super soft bamboo. Normally found on Stamford market on ridays and aturdays, up and down the country at vegan markets and events like the Bird air at gleton, they can’t wait to see their customers face to face again.

Websites www.archlabelagency.com www.bamboofeet.co.uk www.dogandfield.co.uk www.farndonfields.co.uk/telephone-orders www.thehattonarms.com www.irisandviolet.shop @murano_silver (instagram) and www.conniebear.shop www. natural-structures.co.uk www.onewayoutescape.com  www.therugstudio.co.uk www.wilkinsongoldsmiths.co.uk

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Nurturing your outdoor space through the seasons

car & house Insurance the way you like to do it

0333 305 1295

07726 334501 teresa@viridisdesign.co.uk Hallsdale Insurance Brokers Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FSA). We are permitted to arrange, advise, deal as an agent of insurers and assist in claims handling with respect to non-investment insurance policies. You can check this on the FCA’s Register by visiting the website www.fca.gov.uk or by contacting the FCA on 0845 606 1234. The registered number is 476958.


Installers of stylish thermally efficient products. Highly knowledgeable staff who offer excellent advice. Exceptionally high security rating on all products, many achieving PAS 24.

visit our showroom 12 St Leonard’s Street, Stamford, Lincs PE9 2HN Open: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm, Sat 9am-3pm

Tel: 01780 654321 Email: sales@classicstamford.co.uk www.classicstamford.co.uk

Active life RECIPE

Strawberry tart


UNE IS THE month for strawberries. This year because of the closure of restaurants, no Wimbledon and other large gatherings cancelled there promises to be a glut of delicious, succulent nglish strawberries. o make the most of them. We may still be mainly confined to our homes but it doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy making the most of this year’s crop of nglish strawberries, they take a lot of beating. This strawberry tart is relatively simple using ingredients that are easy to get hold of.

INGREDIENTS 00g hulled and halved strawberries • 50g golden caster sugar SWEET SHORTCRUST PASTRY g plain flour • 150g butter g golden caster sugar • 1 egg egg yolk PASTRY CREAM egg yolks • 75g golden caster sugar g cornflour • 300ml milk 3 tsp vanilla essence • 35ml double cream g butter

METHOD Rub the flour and butter together until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. tir in the sugar then add the egg plus the yolk. ix everything together to form a dough. Wrap or cover and place in the fridge for an hour to allow it to chill. • Heat the oven to 200 degrees. Roll out the pastry to 3cm thickness and line a flan ring with it. Bake blind using baking beans or rice for 20 minutes until golden. Remove beans and cook for another five minutes until the pastry looks crisp. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 180 degrees. Put the halved strawberries onto a baking tray in a single layer and sprinkle with the sugar. Cook for 0 minutes until tender. eave to cool. Remove strawberries from tray, pour juices into a pan and boil, then reduce to a syrup consistency.

• Make the pastry cream. Whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar together until smooth. Then mix in the cornflour. Bring the milk to the boil with the vanilla essence then slowly pour over the egg mix, whisking continuously. Then simmer for a few minutes, but do not let it boil. It should be very thick. Add the cream and butter and whisk again. Then strain into a new bowl. Press a piece of greaseproof paper on the top to prevent a skin forming whilst it cools. When everything is cold, assemble the tart. pread the pastry cream on top of the base and then spoon the strawberries on the top. Brush the syrup over the strawberries and serve.

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A taste for tea Lizzie Davies, once a reluctant tea drinker, describes her conversion by making her own brews


NYONE WHO KNOWS me will have me pegged as a coffee addict and never a tea drinker. aving occasionally been sucked in by the enticing herbal tea packaging of upmarket brands, I’ve always been sorely disappointed by the taste far too weak and the taste not nearly as satisfying as the aroma. But needing to cut down on caffeine I decided I’d experiment with homemade teas made from fresh leaves. I was willing to give it a good go as homemade herbal teas play to my passions for reduced packaging (remember most tea bags still contain plastic), minimal food miles, lack of processing, creativity and bagging a bargain, so I was determined to persevere. There’s lots of fancy infusers on the market but all you need is a selection of edible leaves, boiling water, a spoon, a strainer and a mug, preferably a clear one so you can admire the vibrant colours of the leaves. Place a small handful of leaves (approx five of each larger leaf or a couple of short stems of shorter leaves such as thyme) in the mug, pour on just off the boil water and give it a stir. The flavour will get stronger if you leave the leaves in and drink it, so you may wish to strain it after a few minutes.


Grow your own mint, thyme, rosemary,

basil, cornflower petals, lemon balm, lavender leaves or flowers. ost herbs don’t take up much space and work well on a bright windowsill or balcony.

Foraged cleavers (sticky weed), lime tree flowers, birch leaves, dandelion leaves, rose hips (for drying). Good practice for foraging

Remember we’re sharing nature’s larder. eek permission from the landowner if private land. Avoid the roadside areas that have been sprayed with chemicals and likely dog toileting areas. Only pick if you are 00 certain you know what you’re picking. Only pick if you can leave plenty for wildlife. Only take what you need and never whole plants.


I’ll leave you to explore the evidence around potential health benefits. But it is important to remember that, as with all food and drink, it’s best to aim for moderation and variety and that overdoing a particular herb or combination of herbs may affect your health adversely. If you have any underlying medical conditions, are on medication or are pregnant or breastfeeding take advice from your medical team or a reliable source before drinking your own teas.

LIZZIE’S FAVOURITE BREWS emon thyme and mint Cleaver and chopped fresh ginger Rosemary and cornflower petals

I’m definitely a convert and it’s been noticed, as I passed my neighbour today she said i ie, have you been picking weeds again?’

Kids’ corner Herbs are the ultimate in sensory play being both tactile and fragrant. Encourage kids to pick a couple of leaves and crush them to release the full smell. Looking at herbs provides a good opportunity to discuss rules for what is safe to eat and allowable to pick from the garden, or from the wild. Treasure trail - identify 10 trees, flowers or herbs during a walk - see the links below for readymade sheets and ideas. Herb butter - finely chop wild garlic and chives and mix into softened butter. Delicious on hot breads and potatoes. Play dough - mix finely chopped dried lavender flowers or rosemary and roll into the dough.

Helpful links: Woodland Trust - foraging Country Living - herbal teas Jekka’s Guide to Herbal Infusions The Herb Society Countryside Classroom - great selection of ideas and education resources Instagram @the herb society Instagram @sustainable_pect - kids’ activities You can follow Lizzie on Instagram @lizcatalpa and on Facebook @catalpacloud


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Active life


A riot of colour Garden designer Teresa Kennedy has a lot of plants to play with because of the cancellation of her showcase garden, but she’s putting them to good use


’M CURRENTLY TENDING 2,500 plants; a mix of annuals grown from seed, corms and bulbs which were destined for my Showcase garden at this year’s BBC Gardener’s World Live; alas, that is now on hold for a year. Despite the obvious disappointment, I’m looking forward to playing about with these plants this month when they are at their peak by doing a mock-up show garden at home. This is no bad thing, plus it gives me the opportunity to talk to you about how to build borders with flowers. In the absence of having such a number of mobile flowers to hand, it’s important to remember that normally it is OK to play about with plants at your local garden centre, get them off the shelves and build your border before you buy. But in today’s climate I would be a little bit wary of doing this at the moment, ask first if they would mind.

What to try:

I tend to start with the showpiece items, the big headed flowers, the ones that will first catch your eye. ou are looking for the flower that you fall in love with. Now, two things, what colour is it and what form does it take (ie is it round headed, tall spired, multi-stemmed?) ou are now looking for colours that either complement or contrast, it’s your choice. A colour wheel is useful if you feel a bit lost. Once you have a range of flowers in the colour range you like you can look at the form (shape). ou want your border to have a good solid mid height level with plenty of flowering heads in it. Above this you want to drag the eye up following a few tall spires which give a floaty feel to your border. Below this you want a base level which can be predominantly green with small headed flowers. I’m simplifying, but this will give you the confidence to try different combinations before you bring them home. Try and mix in globes, spires, pin heads, floaty, multi stem and open petal. This is how you create interest in a border. If you can’t get out to a garden centre then look online. Sarah Raven is a great website for inspiration and purchasing. ou know by now that my favourite stop for ideas is David Austin Roses. Plus there are many local nurseries that you can support and who will give you invaluable advice. www.viridisdesign.co.uk 07726 334501

June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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Active life

Nurture your creativity during lockdown Why not awaken your inner creativity? Local artist and teacher Jax Crew shows us how to channel nature’s inspiration through journalling; or dust off your camera and record life around you or put pen to paper and write a poem Nature Journalling All around us I am noticing the verdant plant growth emerging and the birdsong has become more noticeable; and I want to be a part of it. Looking at nature and observing details reconnects us and helps us appreciate the rich, complex, fascinating and beautiful world we live in, giving us hope. It can also make us want to find out more about nature and can help improve our memory. Nature journalling is simply recording observations, thoughts and feelings noted from our gardens or when out on walks. Making a special time for this - perhaps a daily practice - in a notebook is a way of slowing down and making meaning of life. oticing the infinite variations in nature broadens our view and asking questions can channel our minds in new directions, helping us to see connections and comparisons. Make sure you chose something that interests you: leaves, stream currents, cracks in the mud, a flock of birds, a spider. A defined focus helps you spend your time making observations, not working out what to observe. Before you start take a few deep breaths and go through your senses, what do you see, feel, smell, hear, touch? You will need a notebook and pens/pencils/crayons to write and sketch with. ake different scales of sketches close ups, little landscapes, maps; areas of colour; weather icons; notes about sounds, smells, textures; numbers, where objects are counted; arrows to connect words to a part of the drawing. Write about feelings, ideas, thoughts, you might want to write down what it is that makes you love a particular place, or object; questions; reminders to research something. It doesn’t matter if you think you cannot draw: just make a quick sketch, a little scribble. My sketches might not look very good but it doesn’t matter, the process helps me notice things I wouldn’t ordinarily do, it slows me down. Looking back at your journal later, you will be surprised at what connections you have made and what details you have observed.

These activities can lift our creative spirit, reconnecting us to nature which is essentially our lifeblood. Follow Jax on Instagram at jaxcrewartist

Lockdown photography competition Stamford Arts Centre is looking for interesting, fun or inspiring photos that show how you, your family (and maybe even your pets) are getting on during the lockdown. Take a photo at home, in the garden or when you go outside for exercise. There will be prizes for the best entries, and entries will be published on the Guildhall and Stamford Arts Centre website, on social media and displayed in some venues for everyone to see when we all eventually return to normal (so do make sure you have permission from anyone whose photo you have taken). To enter please email your image to boxo ce stamfordartscentre. com or use the hashtag #skdcphoto on Instagram

Poet’s Corner Many people have had more leisure time during lockdown so have been reading more, and reading poetry has increased in popularity too. This could be because poems can provide great consolation during a crisis as they provide insights into coping with the everyday or the great mysteries of life. But many people are nervous or dismissive of poetry, thinking it’s not for them. If that’s the case we suggest: • If you don’t like a poem, move on, read another. Don’t feel you have to like or understand every one you read. • Read it aloud to feel the rhythm of the language. • It’s not a problem to be solved; a poem is a window, asking you to look at something more closely. • Read, read and read poetry (anthologies are helpful) then write your own to help you understand how poems are put together.

June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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W I L L’ S W A L K

A long way from Lincolnshire There is one sure way to fall in love with Slovenia, as Will Hetherington discovered last summer on this ascent of the country’s highest mountain.

20 June 2020 / the activemag.com

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N THIS TINY but beautiful country they say you are not a true Slovene if you haven’t been to the top of the 2,864m mighty Mount Triglav. It might be a bit of an old chestnut, but this mountain and the National Park surrounding it are intrinsic to the identity of this young nation, which was part of Yugoslavia until independence in 1992. In fact Triglav was the highest peak in the whole of that once vast state, and today the imposing lump of rock is so enshrined in the Slovenian psyche that it even features on the flag. With a population of just two million in an almost identical area to Wales (more than three million people) this is not a densely populated country. Apart from Ljubljana, the pretty little capital with its fairytale castle, and drop dead gorgeous Piran down on the Adriatic coast, the main draw is the Triglav National Park in the north west. Up here in the Julian Alps the meadows are greener than England in May and the water in the rivers runs a mesmerising mix of topaz blue and iridescent turquoise. Here the twin lakes of Bled and Bohinj sit like precious jewels embedded in this green and pleasant land, as if it wasn’t easy enough on the eye already. Bled is famous and popular and rightly so because it’s pretty, Hollywood pretty, with its clifftop castle and tiny island adorned with a suitably cute church. But Bled is also commercial and busy, so it’s worth a night or two but a 20-minute drive west to Bohinj opens up the real outdoor adventure playground.


The northern shore of Lake Bohinj was our starting point for the ascent of Triglav and it was here we were deposited by Life Adventures (a guiding company in Bled). We


were given instruction on how to use the via ferrata equipment, a rudimentary map and told which direction to head. At this point we were at 0m above sea level and set off at 9.30am. We knew we had to make it to the Dom Planika mountain hut before nightfall. In retrospect I think I blanked out the plain truth that this meant 1,850m of ascent in the one day. As we were to discover at 2,400m this hut is a very long way, in every sense, from the sleepy start point on the verdant shores of Lake Bohinj more than a mile below. Apart from the two of us there were four younger Belgians also setting off from the same point. We wanted to get started so we bid them adieu (resisting the urge to crack any Hercule Poirot gags) and started strolling on a gentle incline through some low alpine woodland with a river to our right. This is the Mostnica gorge and in itself is one of the must-see places in the National Park, so we made a quick detour to a lovely waterfall before returning to the most idyllic alpine meadow. Now anybody who has been up a few mountains will know that words like ‘idyllic,’ ‘meadow’ and ‘gentle gradient’ don’t normally spring to mind when you have to ascend more than one mile in one day. And so it proved here. Once we had cleared the last of the wildflower meadows and left behind the occasional stretch on the tarmac road, we were suddenly faced with an exhausting series of steep straight climbs divided by hairpins going up through the woodland. It felt a bit like rugby training 25 years ago to be honest, and was quite a long way removed from anything I would describe as fun these days. Bear in mind we were also carrying our own kit, water and lunches for three days and all the via ferrata equipment. This was hard going and, while the Slovenians may be weaned on these sort of gradients, us incolnshire folk find them a long way from the flat fertile soil of The ens.

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However, perseverance and sheer determination got us through this first woodland assault. Apart from the odd person heading down the hill we were the only people in this peaceful corner of middle Europe, and if it didn’t hurt quite so much it would have been more wonderful. Of course in retrospect I can smile about it. Our first target was the odnikov Dom, a mountain hut which had already taken on a sort of Elysian image in my mind long before it was a realistic prospect ‘just around the next corner.’ At 1,800m this is recommended as the place to eat your packed lunch on the way up to the Planika Dom, because it’s well over halfway and has running water and spectacular views. But it’s not that simple is it? Yes it’s more than halfway so that makes sense, but equally you have to get there without completely running out of energy and temporarily mislaying that all important sense of humour. I will hold my hands up; after the initial onslaught uphill through the woods and then another couple of hours of intermittent ‘very steep’ and just ‘oldfashioned steep’ terrain I needed odnikov Dom badly. And each time we thought it was ‘just around the corner’ it wasn’t, so eventually I caved in and found a lovely rock to rest my weary body on and enjoy some necessary sustenance. Don’t forget that once you get up to 1,500m and above the air gets noticeably thinner and it’s harder to get the oxygen into the lungs. There is a reason long distance runners train at altitude. As we enjoyed our lunch purchased from the bakery in Bled that morning the four young Belgians from the start point emerged on the woodland track behind us and passed by with a cheery nod. It’s not a race you know Refreshed, nourished and invigorated we took up the trail again and what did we find around the next corner? You guessed it – odnikov Dom, perched on the side of a scree face with incredible views over the bowl below. It may be remote and high but here they have running water, facilities and plenty of food should you need it. So we took another minutes before donning backpacks and striding out again.



Mount Triglav France


Switzerland Slovenia Italy


By now we were above the treeline (more than 2,000m) and traversing the slopes along single paths with frequent evidence of landslides. Within a mile of odnikov Dom we met a different type of walker on the path as an ibex casually plodded along the trail and almost tipped his antlers to us as if to say: “From the sweat and the swearing I’d say you are British are you not? In that case you’ve done well to reach this point but don’t forget you are in Slovenia now. These are our mountains.” It was a lovely sight. Eventually at about 6pm we arrived at the Planika Dom after another hour of walking through a moonscape. To me a mountain hut suggests a tiny wooden shack with a roaring fire and a hot stew cooking in a pot above. ere the two of you take peaceful shelter during the hours of darkness, ready for the

assault on the summit in the morning. Maybe I’m deluded. The Planika sleeps 0 people in two dormitories and a few other rooms, and on this night in late July it was full to brimming. Having seen very few people on the way up, this came as a surprise to us, but there is more than one route and clearly we had taken the toughest – at least I was happy to believe that. Having been shown our two top bunks in the dorm behind the main building, we found a corner in the foyer area and enjoyed two or three of the most expensive beers in Slovenia with a limited meal of meatless stew and bread. Most of the supplies are brought in by helicopter so I’m not complaining – it’s just not the idyllic mountain hut experience I naively had in mind. I’m not going to even describe the facilities, except to say with no running water they were best avoided.

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The final 300m or so is along a very narrow ridgeway and if there had been more than a breath of wind or even a drop of rain I would have been terrified.

One of the perks of uncomfortable accommodation is that it’s not di cult to get up in the morning. In fact the real challenge was waiting until am for breakfast a chunk of bread, ham and fried eggs. After that we were ready to take on the final 0m climb to the top. The sky was blue and there was almost no breeze which made it even easier to just get cracking. ost of the final ascent from Planika Dom involves using the via ferrata equipment which includes a waist harness, ropes, carabiner clips and a helmet. There are long sections of steel wires pegged into the rock on the way up, and for inexperienced climbers like me this safety measure provides welcome peace of mind. I saw two or three people on the way up who looked like they were out for a casual stroll, but I suppose to them they were. And as for the one person running up – I don’t know where to start. The final 300m or so is along a very narrow ridgeway and if there had been more than a breath of wind or even a drop of rain I would have been terrified. But with stunning blue sky all around I was fairly confident and concentrated hard on not looking down until we reached the very summit with the famous Alja Tower (constructed in ) proudly overlooking all of lovenia. On this perfect uly day there were 30 people gathered around the summit, and the weather was so good it was all too easy to sit there for half an hour and enjoy the achievement, the view and the rest.


owever we knew we had a long way to go, so at 0am we began the descent the opposite way from the ascent. As we cautiously made our way down from the summit we encountered a few people (not lovenians) who had given up which goes to show that, while it’s no verest, it’s still not easy either. One thing we observed from our position in the slow lane on this national treasure was that lovenians are really good at going up

and down steep slopes. Apart from the four Belgians, we were generally the slowest movers on this mountain. And on occasion we were passed by families including children younger than 0 years old. They were clearly earning their lovenian credentials early in life and evidently ascending the titanic Triglav really is a rite of passage. About minutes from the summit there is a section that involves traversing a small cliff face which is probably the trickiest bit of the whole climb because one slip and you would be hanging by the carabiner. But after that it’s pretty much walking all the way, with a lunch stop at the Dolic Hut, nestled into a panoramic pass. After Dolic it’s a long, long walk via the ribarice plateau (where we found some snow even on uly ) and then a never ending valley path to the Triglav akes alley mountain hut at , 00m. This place is a lot lower down the mountain and has the feel of a more established hostel than the bleak Planika ut of the night before. We arrived at .30pm after an hour hike, so we were pleased to discover it has running water and flushing toilets inside the building. Although we missed the shower window it was a pleasant place to relax with the Belgian uartet – after all that is a nation that really appreciates their beer. I’m sure they loved my inevitable little grey cells’ gag too. The following day another five hours’ walking brought us most of the way back down to ake Bohinj (via Dom na omni) to the avica waterfall, restaurant and tourist spot which was our pick up spot and looked like a lovely place to spend the night. But a return to Bled awaited us, having scaled the highest peak in the magical little land of lovenia, even if we did do it at a British pace. After hours on foot, more than a mile up and more than a mile down, and two nights in the mountains I don’t ualify as a lovenian but I’d like to keep trying.

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The Hype of Hemp CBD oil seems to be the new panacea of all evils, but is this the case?

26 June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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Active life


E ALL KNOW that growing cannabis is illegal and every now and then a case pops up of people growing it in their gardens or being caught out by growing it in their attic. It never created much interest and was just ‘one of those things.’ But times have changed - or are changing - if not people’s perceptions necessarily. Hemp and cannabis could be described as ‘cousins’ in the plant world. Both have similar attributes and in some ways qualities, but with one huge difference. Cannabis makes you high, hemp does not. And this seems to be what many people, governments and businesses are finding it hard to get their heads around. So much so that hemp, in this country if you want to use the whole plant, has to be grown under licence. And that licence is granted by the ome O ce (and very di cult to get) rather than D RA, so it is not viewed as an agricultural crop. Historically hemp was a crop grown for many uses, and it still is today used to make rope, paper, clothing, insulation, food and biofuel. But if you want to use it to insulate your house, you apparently still have to get a government licence. So what on earth is going on? Why, if hemp is not an addictive, hallucinogenic drug are we not allowed to grow it? That is probably a question for the experts. To put it bluntly hemp contains no more than 0.2% (dry weight) of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) which is the psychoactive substance found in cannabis so does not affect anyone who uses it. Hemp is harmless and believed to be beneficial to health. And because of this many people are now turning to hemp, or the CBD (cannabidiol) extract. It is not classed as a medicine, and retailers are very careful to not market it as such, rather as a food supplement. But it does seem to have medicinal qualities. And some view it as a panacea for all ills. It has been found to have anti inflammatory ualities.

“The healing ability of plants has always fascinated me and I knew that hemp offered these qualities.” Many use it as a painkiller, others to help reduce anxiety and stress, others to aid sleep; it is believed to help acne and in some cases relieve cancer-related symptoms (but this is not always the case). Most of the people using CBD oil like the fact it is a natural product often viewing it as an alternative to over the counter or prescription pharmaceutical products. CBD oil is often used as a preventative measure so enabling painkillers and such to be avoided. omebody who has realised the benefits of hemp and CBD extract is Ed Haynes from Haynes Horticulture. Ed was brought up in a village near Stamford and educated locally before heading to London where he became involved in event management, particularly with regards to festivals including The Secret Garden Party. He lived life to the full in London, ‘but the pull of the soil kept pulling me back to the family business.’ Ed returned to the area and worked hard at Haynes Horticulture who manage, maintain and landscape large gardens in the area. But he had another passion as well. ‘I have always been interested in the soil and it and our relationship to nature. The healing ability of plants has always fascinated me and I knew that hemp offered these ualities. I have spent many years researching the crop and would really like to be able to grow it locally and am exploring the idea. But I know I need a licence, which is going to be di cult to get hold of.’

Undeterred Ed decided that he would start importing CBD extract from the USA, mixing his own blends in this country and then selling it; and so sister company Luna and Leaf was launched. ‘Initially I was only selling to family and friends but by word of mouth the company has grown and I now have a loyal following of customers. CBD oil is sold as a food supplement. I have a mixologist and we mix the hemp oil (MCT) with coconut oil. The THC in our oil is only 0.2% so it’s perfectly legal; you don’t get high and it is not addictive. I view the oil as part of a balanced diet. It is all natural and interacts with the receptors in your body; it is a prevention rather than a cure. CBD has really helped me as I came back from London ‘a broken man’ so to speak; exhausted, suffering from anxiety and high levels of stress. I needed to reacquaint myself with nature and get my life back on track which I have, and believe that CBD oil has helped. Interestingly my customers range in age from pensioners to teenagers, all enjoying the benefits of the oil.’ Interest in CBD oil in this country continues to grow at a rapid rate and the market is expanding hugely. Ed warns that you need to check what you buy is reliably sourced, and is actually what it is claimed to be as there are many ‘cowboys’ jumping on the bandwagon. In the UK any product with more than 0.2% THC in it is illegal and the oil cannot be sold as a medicine but has to be a food supplement. Medical claims are not legally allowed to be made, despite many people believing in the benefits. emp and CBD oil are a minefield of medical, ethical and legal irregularities. But in this rapidly growing market it seems to warrant more research to see if the benefits are what they appear to be. www.lunaandleaf.co.uk www.hayneshorticulture.co.uk

June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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What type of walker are you, part two? Will Hetherington identifies some more typical characters you might meet whilst out walking. Or is one of them you?


PE RFECT COMPANY It’s a walk and it’s nice to chat. Also there’s time to do it properly out there in the fresh air. So you can ask questions, listen to the answer and respond accordingly. In the flow of the conversation both parties will learn a lot about each other and enjoy the experience. Maybe this all sounds rather obvious, but the point is it’s the time out there away from other distractions which allows for the greater appreciation of each other. There’s also quite a lot of truth in the theory that people open up more easily when walking side by side (or sitting in a car) than when facing each other. In reality most people fall into this category, even if you don’t know it until you have met and started talking. The perfect company equation should always end in the pub, with a roaring fire and a brief conversation something like this I’m going to the bar, what would you like to drink?” Don’t be silly let me get you one. ow about I buy these and you get the next two Perfect. Advice you have two ears and one mouth.

ow most people do fit the perfect company category, but for some even the tranquillity of the countryside cannot dent the need to stamp all over every conversation with a display of impertinent peacockery. ou say I like this walk because five miles is a nice distance long enough to know about it but not so long that it takes up half the day or exhausts me. They say I usually walk 0 miles every day so this won’t be enough for me.” ou say I’m perfectly happy walking in this old coat because it does the job. They say I remember having one of those in the 0s. ardly fit for purpose now though is it? I buy a new jacket every year. Can’t see why anybody wouldn’t…” ou say It’s nice to have a well behaved dog. It means no problem with farmers, other dog walkers or cyclists.” They say Call that a well trained dog I won Crufts and One an and is Dog. And when I used to work for the government, not that I can talk about that really…” Advice walk away. They won’t notice.

28 June 2020 / the activemag.com

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THE MOUNTAIN GOAT You reach the top of what you consider to be a monumental peak (anything over 200m for us Lincolnshire lot). Breathing heavily and sweating profusely you manage to get the following words out: “Wow, that was a pretty serious climb... Shall we have a little breather soon, like now?” Only to be met with: “Was it? Oh yes now you mention it the view is rather pleasant isn’t it. And yes we can stop if you need to.” These are the infuriating words of the naturally fit, or those who take a lot more care of their bodies than the rest of us. ormally wonderful company, they glide serenely over the flat ground and seem to float up hills unhindered by aching uad muscles, hamstrings and calves. Genes can be cruel to the rest of us. And in my experience these walkers don’t necessarily turn up in all the latest high-tech gear. Quite often jeans, wellies, woolly jumper and a coat seem to be the uniform of the mountain goat. The good news is they will always be fresh enough to make sensible decisions when the way has become temporarily unclear or some unforeseen problem occurs. They will usually get to the bar first too. Advice: You don’t have to keep up but it will help your fitness.

WE ARE ALL PILGRIMS David from Dublin (remember him from last month?) taught me a valuable lesson on the Camino de Santiago, which I will never forget. On the outskirts of the beautiful Spanish city of Leon three of us were walking together and the conversation turned to people who chose to take a bus for a day rather than walk. I may have uestioned whether this was really in the spirit of the Camino. To which 77-year-old David, who had walked for more than 1,000 miles from Cherbourg in northern France, softly said: “Now, now Will, we are all pilgrims here.” As of course we all are, so please don’t take this article too seriously. But I hope you recognise yourself somewhere amid these characters and that some time soon enough we can all be out there together enjoying the great British countryside again. Until we meet again.

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ActiveBody E DI T E D BY K AT E M A X I M

Cough it all up Many of us hadn’t realised that physiotherapists play a big part in the recovery and treatment of lung ailments, Sarah Babbs enlightens us


OST OF US think of physiotherapy as being part of recovery and rehabilitation following injury or pain. When I was at school thinking about careers, when physiotherapy was suggested I thought exactly that. It was only when I did some research that my eyes were opened. And the first part of my career was based in respiratory roles and specialist hospitals. The role of physiotherapy is playing a big part in the fight against coronavirus. Respiratory physiotherapy involves caring for those with underlying lung disease such as cystic fibrosis, bronchiectasis and COPD, as well as following surgery or long term bed rest especially in IT situations. In all of these cases patients may have di culty breathing well, clearing their chests of sputum and managing their day to day fitness. In IT where ventilators are helping people breathe, the patient is unable to do these things for themselves. Cystic fibrosis is a genetic condition where sticky secretions build up in the lungs and restrict normal breathing. If left unattended infection can occur. ost people with cystic

fibrosis perform a daily routine including breathing exercises, positioning of the body using gravity to aid the draining of secretions and sometimes clapping which involves clapping hands against the chest to loosen secretions followed by a specific routine to clear them. An arduous task. With COPD and other causes of breathlessness, respiratory physiotherapy may involve teaching people to be more relaxed in their breathing and to change their breathing rate for tasks such as climbing stairs, in much the same way as runners do when pacing themselves. During the current Covid outbreak physiotherapists are working in IT but in a slightly different way. It appears that most people have a non productive cough, with little or no secretions to clear. Coughing can be exhausting, leading to an increase in tiredness in an already fatigued patient. Working with patients still involves the breathing work but a discovery has been made that lying prone on your front helps to improve the ventilation or air flow to the largest part of the lungs which sit low and

towards the back of the rib cage. entilated patients are being turned about every two hours which re uires a team of seven people. It seems incredible but ventilated patients are often helped to sit up on the side of the bed and sometimes are even walking with staff to promote early recovery and prevent further loss of strength and mobility. This also continues once off ventilator support and moved to the rehabilitation wards. We physios never let our exercises go As people recover from more severe Covid the main di culties seem to be fatigue, breathing di culties and confusion as well as anxiety and general weakness. upporting patients as they recover is paramount and community support is being improved to help patients once home. There has been a widely shared video of a doctor discussing how to breathe to improve ventilation and prevent further problems. e advocates taking six large breaths and then coughing. Though this may be appropriate for some, many will become di y doing this and the coughing is not necessary for most. The Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Respiratory Care has suggested that while the exercises should be harmless for healthy individuals, they could make symptoms worse in someone suffering breathlessness. Taking 3 breaths is plenty and if one has secretions that need clearing, rather than coughing try a small huff (a small breath in and a slightly faster one out, as if trying to breathe onto a mirror). If there are secretions this moves them up the airway and a smaller cough will clear them, preventing fatigue. Then a few normal breaths to settle down. Also do them sitting in case you feel di y itting leaning forward in a chair also opens the back of the ribcage and for some with underlying respiratory conditions lying prone for a short while may be helpful. But there is no evidence that doing this will prevent healthy individuals from catching the virus, nor improve their lungs. We know that doing regular exercise which gets us out of breath helps the lungs, heart and general health, all of which may help if we become ill. o keep fit, eat well, drink plenty of water and stay well and safe. To make an appointment with Sarah ring 01780 480899 or 07780 900201

30 June 2020 / the activemag.com

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Keep those pearly whites bright Dr Dipti Lad from Andrews Dental Care in Uppingham recommends ways to look after your teeth, particularly important now that access to dental surgeries is limited


Your brushing routine

It is important to brush twice a day, usually first thing in the morning and last thing at night. se a pea si e drop of toothpaste and brush for two minutes in a systematic manner. Take your time, using a gentle circular motion so you work the toothpaste on to your teeth and gums and remove the pla ue. pit the toothpaste out at the end of the two minutes but make sure you do not rinse. The toothpaste needs to stay on to keep protecting your teeth throughout the day otherwise you’re washing it all away


Electric vs manual

Both electric and manual toothbrushes are e ually as effective if all the surfaces of teeth are cleaned. Ensure you also brush downwards towards your gumline as pla ue tends to build here more.


Fluoride, fluoride, fluoride

se a fluoride toothpaste. It should contain at least 1400ppm in adult toothpastes. This re mineralises enamel to strengthen and protect against cavities. sing a fluoride mouthwash at a different time to toothbrushing can help to protect against foods and drinks consumed throughout the day. An ideal time is after a meal.


Flossing and interdental brushes

se dental floss or interdental brushes where possible twice a day after brushing. This is just as important as brushing. Toothbrushing helps to keep the outer surfaces of teeth clean but the enamel in between teeth also needs to be cleaned and pla ue needs removing. Pass it through the teeth down to the gum line and it will stimulate the gums and help reduce inflammation.

5 6

Don’t neglect your tongue.

Pla ue can form on your tongue causing bad odour and other conditions. ently brush your tongue every time you brush your teeth.


Reduce the consumption of sugary and acidic drinks. They erode the enamel of your teeth and then sugar converts to acid and dissolves your teeth. Drink water in between meals and if you do have another drink keep them to mealtimes as there is an acid attack on your teeth when you eat anyway, so it is best to have it altogether. sing a recyclable straw for any drink other than water will help to protect your teeth from direct contact.



What you eat has a huge effect on your teeth as well as your general health. ating fresh and crunchy produce gives you fibre and helps your teeth and jaw movements whilst mushy processed foods do not. ugary foods are a substrate for pla ue bacteria which will cause cavities. It is fine to have a treat once a week but remember to have it straight after your meal as a dessert, so you group it together.


Smoking and alcohol

top smoking and reduce your alcohol consumption as it increases the risk of oral cancer, it will help your general health too. se this time at home to improve your health.


Protecting your teeth

Protect your teeth from injury by wearing a mouthguard during sport. If you knock your tooth out hold it in its place and seek urgent dental care. If you cannot get help uickly wrap it in plastic to protect it from contamination and seek emergency dental care. Remember time is of the essence. ever use your teeth for anything other than chewing to avoid them chipping or breaking.



ensitivity is common and often caused by over ealous brushing. Change your brushing techni ue. sing an electric toothbrush can help to prevent too much pressure. sing a desensitising toothpaste will help and you can even rub it directly on the tooth and leave it overnight. Of course, sensitivity is also caused by those acidic drinks so stopping them may help. www.andrewsdentalcare.co.uk

June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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Spotlight on tennis | Meet the pensioner rowing the Atlantic The roundup |

ActiveSport On your bike! This month Gary continues to explore the Turbo trainer working on his fitness and starts a charity event, which you are all welcome to join


’M NOW GETTING really used to my Zwift app linked with my Tacx Turbo trainer. It’s made a real difference to my level of fitness which has inspired me to initiate a challenge event in support of The Royal Air Forces Association (RAFA). As a 34-year veteran of the RAF, RAFA is close to my heart. The charity looks after the RAF family of yesterday, today and tomorrow. To help raise funds I normally help organise a 100 mile ride in June, but this year of course it is not possible. But where there’s a will… RAFA are hosting an event on June 14 to help raise funds and everyone is welcome to join in. Pull together a team of 10 riders and collectively ride a distance of 100 miles – real (socially distanced), virtual or even on a basic cycling fitness trainer. The aim is to raise at least £100 per team. Not too much of a challenge? Well to headline the event I’m being joined by nine other riders from across the RAF family (currently serving and retired). We are

going to ride together - despite being located all over the world - on Zwift and complete the 100 mile route simultaneously. We are fortunate to have Red 1 from the Red Arrows in our team and will be joined by special guests throughout the day including Rory Underwood who at one point served in the RAF alongside me. I’ve yet to select the final route we will ride but it’s likely to be in the faraway land of Watopia on Zwift on the ‘Sand and Sequoias’ route, which is a 13 mile circuit through desert and giant redwoods and is far less hilly than riding up their volcano – I look forward to you joining us. Fancy joining in? The more the merrier. Sign up at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/ rafarides-virtual-2020-tickets-104013685734 and try and meet the aspirational fundraising target of £100 at https://www. justgiving.com/campaign/RAFARidesVirtual by forming your team. Happy cycling…

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Age will not wither us

Age is just a number to these two local athletes who are at the top of their game despite their advancing years

Alison Lilley, British National Masters road race champion LAST YEAR AGED 50, cyclist Alison Lilley had an outstanding year racing winning her age group for a third time at the Tour of Cambridgeshire Gran Fondo World Series event and becoming a British National Masters road race champion. Her third goal for the year, to win the Gran Fondo World Championship in Poland, looked like a real prospect as she was in the form of her life. “Disaster struck whilst I was sitting in third place in my age group racing along at 49/50kph. A massive crash just ahead brought me down leaving little skin intact and a bike with one fork and no wheel. Game over! Strangely I didn’t feel upset as I knew I’d done everything right in the year’s preparation, and on the day. It was just a waste of great form. “Looking forward to wearing the National Masters Champion’s jersey this year was a huge motivator during winter training. I do some pre-season solo training in Majorca but this year within 24 hours of arriving the world changed and the place was in lockdown. “Coming to terms with the news left me in a state of limbo for about two weeks. Most of my goals were gone as racing, my biggest motivator for riding, is suspended until at least July. Online racing like Zwift and Strava simply doesn’t interest me so for now I’m riding much less but have increased my free weight training sessions instead. Utilising strategies to overcome adversity in training and racing have helped too. “Yoga is a new thing for me as I can barely sit cross legged without wincing! We have to make changes as we age to ensure we stay mobile.”

“Yoga is a new thing for me as I can barely sit cross legged without wincing! We have to make changes as we age to ensure we stay mobile.” When she’s not racing Alison is a cycling coach training adults and children, from beginners to talented aspiring athletes helping them achieve their cycling goals. She runs balance bike sessions, learn to cycle lessons and cycle sport coaching as private or group tuition including for nurseries and schools. Having worked for British Cycling as a Regional Development coach for over 12 years Alison established Lilley’s Cycling to bring her wealth of knowledge and

experience to the Peterborough-StamfordCorby area. “As I sit in my home I’ve seen loads of parents and children cycling by which is fantastic but I’m always critiquing their riding and bike set-up. I need to get out and help them!” To contact Alison ring 07856 718884 www.lilleyscycling.com

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72-year-old Graham Walters smashes three world records with epic atlantic crossing

ON APRIL 29, after three months at sea, 72 year-old Graham Walters from Thurmaston in Leicestershire rowed into the record books, becoming not only the oldest person to row across the Atlantic solo, but the oldest person to row solo across any ocean and also to cross the same ocean more than once. This was raham’s fifth Atlantic crossing (his third solo), but he was keen on one final challenge before hanging up his oars. A carpenter by trade, he made the 3,000+ mile crossing in a boat he built 22 years ago in his garden for the first ever Atlantic rowing race in 1997 and named it after his late grandfather, eorge eary, who was a first class cricketer for Leicestershire and England in the 1920s and 30s. He also undertook the challenge to fundraise for elp for eroes, having come to the aid of several wounded veterans supported by the charity who were taking part in a previous Atlantic rowing race when he was on the support boat. While I fixed their boat, I got to know them really well, and I was amazed how well they got on with

things because they were all amputees,” he recounted. That’s what started it off. raham’s last voyage’, as he called it, was by no means plain sailing. It started off with bad weather and rough seas and he had multiple technical issues along the way, including a failed water maker, multiple leaks, falling through the deck at one point and having to avoid curious hammerhead sharks. is final challenge came when, just six miles off the coast of Antigua (his final destination), strong winds blew him in the wrong direction and he had to be towed in – although he was able to row the final short distance to shore, to rapturous applause from a flotilla of small boats there to greet him. or 24 hours this put his record attempt in

jeopardy, but thankfully the Ocean Rowing ociety, o cial adjudicators for the uinness World Records, confirmed that he had broken three records. owever, the world was not uite as raham had left it as he’d never even heard of coronavirus when he left ran Canaria on anuary . e had to uickly get used to wearing a face mask, social distancing and a 12 hour curfew when he landed in Antigua. While he heads back to the UK as a crew member on a sailing boat, the George Geary will stay in Antigua, hopefully in the museum in English Harbour. Graham’s fundraising page for Help for Heroes is at https://www.justgiving.com/ fundraising/Georgegearyrow.

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Jeremy Smithson-Beswick finds out how professional athletes, and those closer to home, are keeping motivated and fit. You might be surprised…


EN WHOLE WEEKS and still we find ourselves in sporting purgatory nless tennis or golf are your bag, obviously. Which, at the risk of alienating a fair proportion of you, is of no help to me as I’m at that di cult age too young for the latter and too old for the former. o this month we focus on what the rest of us have been doing instead to keep active and happy. At least we’ve had a rare opportunity to feel sorry for (but only a teeny bit and temporarily of course) somebody we more often envy the professional sportsperson. or a change, they’ve had it toughest of all, poor bunnies, losing both their leisure and work occupations simultaneously and, with

the gyms closed as well, they’ve had to resort to finding increasingly novel, not to say eccentric, ways of maintaining their fitness. or example, with typical disregard for those of us less fortunate, many of the privileged and overpaid footballing community treacherously worsened those early lockdown shortages by taking part in a global keepy up challenge on social media with loo rolls instead of balls. Barcelona’s ionel essi and anchester nited’s Aaron Wan Bissaka have particularly impressive tube control but the most amusing, especially if you’re not a iverpool fan, is a spectacularly incompetent amie Carragher. ou’re just a uick internet search away from a modern classic.

eanwhile onny ay, soon to leave Tigers to return to loucester, seems to have completely lost it, taking to Twitter to post uarantine training adaptation – ordic amstrings complete with a video of him doing strange things with elastic bands and a window frame to the tune of ye of the Tiger whilst ew ealand’s cricket captain ane Williamson can be found on Instagram deliberately edging the ball off his bat to give some slip catching practice. To his abrador. olly good at it the dog is too very safe mouth. (It’s a tennis ball, should you be reaching for a phone to call the R PCA). Talking of tennis, our own number one player, ohanna onta, picks up on the canine theme by lifting weights on ouTube

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36 June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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ActiveSport accompanied by a somewhat superfluous and bored-looking dachshund. But the wackiest work out award of all goes to USA Olympian long-distance runner and silver medallist Paul Chelimo (second in the 000m final to Mo Farrah, no less). Finding himself deprived of a running machine he resorted to putting washing up liquid in his bath. Yes, I do mean so he could run on the spot on the slippery surface. “No treadmill, no problem. Tough times call for tough measures” he said defiantly through gritted teeth – or would have done, if he’d had any left. Closer to home, our local sportspeople have variously covered themselves in glory and in shame. In a story covered widely by the national press – the only sensible course would have been to treat it as a hoax otherwise – a light hearted online knock out tournament set up for village cricket sides to compete for the title of best-supported team had to be abandoned due to vote rigging, backhanders and fake social media accounts. It’s true! One team in particular was singled out for criticism. The organiser, Leicestershire & Rutland League’s Mike Barber, said “Sadly, some individuals have decided to not enter into the spirit of the competition as it was intended. It was meant to be a bit of fun.” Good grief, what were the culprits thinking of? It just goes to show how one can lose all sense of proportion under lockdown. ever has the saying The devil finds work for idle hands” been more apposite. However, at the risk of a multi-million pound lawsuit, I can assuage our community shame by pointing out that Egerton Park CC is at least ten miles outside of Rutland. Surely innocent of any such shenanigans is the saintly Oakham CC who, in their 150th anniversary year, put their unexpected spare time to better effect by deciding to celebrate the milestone by raising £1,555 (and counting) for the food banks in Oakham and Stamford with a cycling and running challenge. The target was a total of 614 miles – the distance from their ground to The Grange, Scotland’s international stadium where team member Rob Taylor played international cricket, and they made it in just a week. Their JustGiving page is still open by the way....

Plaudits as well to Bourne’s rugby and cricket clubs who joined together in a competition they called the “Battle of Bourne” to see which squad could run the furthest in thirty minutes in aid of the NHS. Plaudits as well to Bourne’s rugby and cricket clubs who joined together in a competition they called the “Battle of Bourne” to see which squad could run the furthest in thirty minutes in aid of the NHS. The cricketers duly won, a result that will be of no surprise to anyone familiar with the average speed of your typical rugby forward. Some are deceptive though (even slower than they look). Given that most sane people regard lubricated bathroom fixtures as too dangerous how are the rest of us to keep body and soul together? Apart from the ubiquitous jog, which for many is no more than a slog, most normal avenues remain resolutely closed. Last month I recommended port ngland’s tay in – Work Out website which is packed with videos, free offers and advice from the likes of oe Wicks and others. It continues to add content and now also

covers outdoor activities and sections for children, adults, the elderly, able and non-able bodied, expectant mothers and so on. If you are motivated to give something a try, there’s bound to be an answer here for you somewhere, so no apologies for giving it another plug. Rugby fans might be more drawn to the Tigers’ site where you will find its it ans initiative. As well as some good overall advice there are new sessions posted weekly with previous ones available by scrolling through the news section. Noisy kids? Stamford RFC have a free workbook available for download for the younger enthusiast. If all else fails, just dig out one of your precious loo rolls. At least you’ll have more than an even chance of out-performing a certain ex-Liverpool football pundit, even if you’re a Labrador.

June 2020 / theactivemag.com

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Spotlight on tennis Stamford Tennis Club shines a light on the sport

Britain has had excellent tennis players, both male and female. Our top five greatest players being:


NYONE CAN PLAY tennis, whatever your age or ability, that’s the great thing about the sport. Tennis is good for your physical and mental health. It can help lower body fat while improving muscle tone, strength and flexibility. Playing a game of tennis will release those happy endorphins to help you feel great. It is a fantastic way to spend time with your family, friends and to meet new people. Tennis is a descendant of a medieval game that originated in France, called 'Jeu de paume' – game of the palm. Players used their hands to hit a ball back and forth. The game we know today was first defined with a set of rules written in the 1870s. In its simplest form, tennis involves two players or teams of two, on a court, using rackets to hit a ball to each other over a net. The aim of the game is to hit the ball over the net so your opponent cannot return it within the court markings. There are eight basic shots for a tennis player to master - serve, forehand, backhand, volley, half volley, lob, overhead smash and drop shot. It is played on four different surfaces, grass, clay, hard court and carpet (or artificial grass) with grass regarded as the fastest surface to play on.


The ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals), the WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) and the ITF (International Tennis Federation) operate the global professional tours. The four Grand Slam tournaments are considered to be the most prestigious tennis events in the world. They are held annually and comprise of the Australian Open played on hard courts (founded in 1905), French Open; clay (1881), Wimbledon; grass (1877) and US Open; hard court (1881) and of course Wimbledon should have been played this month. Tennis is also an Olympic sport returning as a full medal sport in the 1988 summer Olympics.

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The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) is the National Governing Body for tennis in Great Britain. Tennis has been one of the first sports to resume during Covid-19 lockdown, but with strict guidelines from the LTA. So Stamford Tennis Club’s courts re-opened on May 14 for members to enjoy restricted play following the guidelines. Coaching is available with head coach CJ Selvidge who can be contacted on 07748 720602. Stamford is fortunate to have a local, well run tennis club with a healthy membership of over 300, situated just off Conduit Road. Stamford Tennis Club (STC) has seven hard courts all with floodlights. The top four courts have recently been resurfaced and have new floodlights. So if you are a looking to play, it doesn’t matter if you are beginner, a bit rusty or a seasoned player, do please contact the club. We are a friendly bunch and will be pleased to hear from you. https://clubspark.lta.org.uk/ StamfordTennisClub

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TO STAY SAFE Keep a safe distance from others Stay home as much as possible Keep washing your hands regularly

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