Members Bulletin #5 Keeping Connected

gym instructor Tony seated upright in a a chair ready to begin seated abdominal curl

In this week's gym members' bulletin we share Ability Bow news including vaccine stories, our tips for exercising core muscles safely and effectively from a seated position, and our recipes to keep our community connected during lockdown.

This Week:

  • This week on the national news we hear that more than 10 million people in the UK have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. Many of our gym members have been getting their vaccines, and our staff team are booked in to receive theirs thanks to City & Hackney CCG (for whom we deliver services for patients with disabilities or long-term health conditions). Our gym member William describes his experience of having the coronavirus vaccine, and now that he has had his first vaccination he says “I am now feeling much more confident about being out and about and feel proud to be a small part of the solution to this awful illness.” See the full story in our Member Spotlight article.

  • New joiners to the online exercise livestreams this week - a very warm welcome to our community!

  • Our Try This at Home exercise this week is the Seated Ab Curl. This exercise helps to develop strength in your core, and it is accessible to most people as it doesn’t require you to lay down on the floor. Do have a try of it, and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask us.

  • We thank gym member Nick for this week’s healthy recipe. Nick offers his tasty tortilla recipe. We know you’ll enjoy this one! If you have any tried, tested and much loved recipes to share just let us know. And do keep sharing the photos when you try out the recipes in the bulletins.. we will publish them in a future edition.

Try this at home: Seated Abdominal Curl

instructor sitting upright in chair with his back straight and hands resting on his lapThe Seated Abdominal Curl is a great way to strengthen your core muscles. You can do it from almost any chair and there’s no need to get down on the floor. A stronger core will help you to stand, walk and sit better, aiding posture and helping to prevent back lower pain.

  • Using a sturdy chair and sitting as straight as you can, position yourself towards the front so you create a gap between yourself and the back of the chair

  • Slowly lean back until you are touching the back of the chair, then return to the start position

  • To make the exercise more challenging, fold your arms across your chest 

  • Repeat 10 - 15 times

Ability Bow Recipes: 

Every week we share a special recipe provided by someone in our community. We’re loving the feedback - and photos - from those of you who are trying out the recipes so if you’re giving any of them a go, or you have a recipe of your own that you’d like to share with others please get in touch!

This week’s recipe offering is from gym member Nick. spanish tortilla lunch served on a plate on a garden table. Side salad and chopped tomatoes in a dish beside it.

This week’s recipe:  Tortilla  


  • 4 eggs

  • 500g potatoes

  • 50g onion 

  • (optional:  one pepper, not red!)

  • olive oil


  1. Peel the potatoes and dice them, aiming at quarter inch size rather than half inch.    

  2. Heat the pan to a lowish heat, and add a generous amount of oil.   When hot, add the diced potatoes, and then chop the onion and pepper to a similar size, adding them 5 minutes later.  

  3. After another 10 minutes or so, or 5 minutes before the vegetables are done, turn up the heat to crisp them up a little. 

  4. Break 4 eggs into a large bowl, and beat them with a pinch of salt.  Tip the vegetables into the beaten eggs and mix well. 

  5. Clear out the pan, adding a splash of oil if necessary, and with medium heat add the mixture, without stirring it at all. After 4 or 5 minutes the base of the tortilla should be done, and you can get an idea about that by gently lifting up the sides and perhaps by shaking the pan to sense that the base is solid.    The top won’t be cooked at all.    

  6. Now the scary bit!     Place the upside-down plate over the half-cooked tortilla, and hold them together as you turn them over.   Oven gloves can be helpful!     Now, shake the pan to make sure the tortilla falls onto the plate, turn the pan right way up and slide the tortilla into it.     Cook it like that for a couple of minutes, and then transfer it to the serving plate.


Halfway through the cooking, the tortilla is turned upside down by covering the frying pan with a plate, and turning them both over. This is easier if you have a plate that’s slightly smaller than the pan and can nestle inside it. The ingredients above suit a pan with diameter 10 inches, making the tortilla itself about 8 inches across.   A non-stick pan will be helpful. Tortillas are eaten cold, cutting out slices like a Christmas cake. Nick

Member Spotlight: 

If you would like to contribute something for others to read please get in touch. This week gym member William writes about his experience of having the Covid vaccine. 

What it was like to get the coronavirus vaccine, by William Taylor

I had the first of my Covid 19 vaccinations in January. I am a 75 -year-old man with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). When I got the text message inviting me for the vaccination I felt a weird mixture of excitement and anxiety . Excitement because I was going to feel more protected from the illness and anxiety because having the test would require me to mix with other people inside for the first time since lock down first began.

On the day of the test I waited with some others in a room with suitable social distancing. A very nice volunteer came and explained what would happen and I filled in a form about medical conditions, especially allergies. After a short wait I was taken in to be vaccinated. The doctor explained the possible side-effects which were basically a sore arm and possibly mild flu feelings. 

The injection itself was painless and over before I realised it was being done. I was then asked to wait in a room for 15 minutes before going home. The only side effect that I had was a slight tenderness on the site of the injection which completely cleared by the next day. I am now feeling much more confident about being out and about and feel proud to be a small part of the solution to this awful illness. William