MSPs took part in a game of bingo in Holyrood in a bid to encourage physical exercise among older people.
Age Scotland’s “Body Boosting Bingo” allows older people to take part strength and balance exercises.
The resource has been piloted with the charity’s member groups and will be made available to day centres and older people’s groups across the country.
Research shows that bodies gradually lose strength and power in muscles and bones as they get older, but this can be reversed. A regular 10 minutes twice per week of strength and balance exercises will help to maintain bone density and muscle power.
Evidence also suggests that without regular exercise muscles deteriorate gradually from age 35 with bodies losing a third of the bone density in hips by age 80.
Body Boosting Bingo promotes light to moderate physical activity in a social context, allowing older people to socialise and keep fit at the same time.
MSPs promoted the initiative by taking part in a game of bingo with older people and perform a range of exercises, such as squats or standing on one leg.
Keith Robson, chief executive of Age Scotland said: “Our research has shown that many older peoples’ groups focus on seated activities. Body Boosting Bingo has been developed to counter this and we plan to promote it among our 1,000 member groups and right across Scotland.”
Christine Grahame MSP for Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale, who took part in the event, said: “I’d like to congratulate Age Scotland on this initiative. It’s not always easy persuading people to take up exercise, but Body Boosting Bingo shows that keeping fit and healthy can be fun and sociable and doesn’t need to involve strenuous activity.
“Strength and Balance exercise is really important for preservation of bone density and muscle power which otherwise decreases rapidly as we age.
"In many cases both conditions are preventable and reversible. Increased strength and balance can contribute to successful ageing; a healthier, active later life with improved confidence and wellbeing.”