Strength for Life

Promoting strength training for over 50s
Age is no barrier to regaining your strength and balance

Recently awarded the Prompt Care Strength for Life Award for Outstanding Instructor at the 2015 COTA SA Positive Ageing Awards!!


Research shows strength training can alleviate the effects of chronic conditions such as Arthritis, Type 2 Diabetes, Osteoporosis and Heart Disease.

Strength training has also been shown to improve:

  • balance and reduce risk of falling,
  • mental wellbeing,
  • body composition (more muscle, less fat),
  • self-esteem and self-confidence,
  • low back pain
  • Older people’s ability to undertake activities of daily living and maintain an independent lifestyle.


Strength training with a progressive format is more effective as it gradually increases the intensity of the exercise. The focus is always on posture, balance and core control. SFL programs will include functional exercises which relate to activities in everyday life.

  • Muscle strength can be regained and maintained no matter what the age and physical condition of the participant.
  • Supervised strength training is not a high risk activity for over-50s.

Having strong muscles is a necessity in living an active and independent life. It is our muscles, after all, that enables us to climb stairs, dig in the garden and lift the groceries.

Unfortunately, many people find their strength diminishes as they get older. This is not generally a result of getting older, but of being inactive, and can be reversed by undertaking regular, supervised strength training.


To assist people over 50 to access venues and services that provide strength training programs COTA SA has developed a program called Strength for Life (SFL), which aims to:

  • Increase the number of quality supervised strength training programs for people 50 years and over by endorsing providers who meet established criteria, and
  • Encourage older people to engage in strength training and experience the benefits strength training provides to their wellbeing and general lifestyle.

The Strength for Life (SFL) program promotes strength training as a suitable and highly beneficial exercise for over 50s, and facilitates programs that are accessible for all older people.

What you can expect from SFL

How to join

All participants are required to have SFL forms completed before they call the SFL facility to book an assessment. This will include pre exercise questionnaire, enrolment form, and a medical referral form completed by their doctor to ensure they are in support of the participant’s joining of the SFL exercise program.

Click the button below to download your form. These forms can be obtained in person from our Customer Service staff at the Adelaide Aquatic Centre, or by calling our Customer service team on 8203 7665.

Download Form

Once the forms have been completed, an assessment can be booked. The participant will have a one-on-one appointment with a SFL qualified instructor to prepare their exercise program.

What to bring:

  • SFL forms
  • Comfortable clothing to exercise in
  • Closed in, soft-sole shoes, preferably sneakers or walking shoes
  • A towel and bottle of water


  • Initial assessment $30
  • Class attendance - $7 for non-members, no attendance cost for members of the Aquatic Centre

Download Timetable

Over-50s speak about the program

Comments from SFL participants

“Back is stronger, I’ve travelled recently and no problems.”

“When I started I couldn’t even touch my toes but within 6 months I can not only touch my toes but run! I’m fitter than I was 5 years ago.”

“I am more supple, thinner, flexibility has improved, and talking with other participants helps me mentally and emotionally.”

“Physically better, especially balance and coordination. Because it is such a fun group, this helps the mental wellbeing.”

“I am stronger – recently had a 2 week break and noticed the decline.”

“After stroked had real balance problems – SFL has been really helpful.”

“I don’t get as tired now when playing golf – I have better stamina.”

“I am not in as much pain in my leg, have better endurance and love the social aspect.”

“I can now easily walk upstairs, SFL helps with fatigue and I have better flexibility.”

“I am stronger – I have a heart condition and my cardiologist is very happy with the improvement.”

“I have more energy, more upper body strength, trying to improve my muscle tone prior to having a knee operation.”

“I’m not going backwards as I was prior to joining SFL.”

“Best thing I have done for years, come twice a week – good stuff.”