For instance, we’ll celebrate National Allotments Week from 10 till 16 August. Whether you have a garden, allotment or a window box, this is a great chance to bury your fingers in the soil and reconnect with nature. Growing flowers, herbs or vegetables is a rewarding achievement. Still, it’s also enjoyable to witness the world of minibeasts that plants attract, such as butterflies and bumblebees, as well as birds. Many stroke survivors find that gardening is a brilliant hobby to improve physical activity, mobility and emotional wellbeing. That’s why we have teamed up with the kind folks at Dobbies Garden Centres, the UK’s leading garden centre retailer to provide people affected with stroke short videos with practical information, and advice to support them getting into gardening no matter their experience or starting point. Get back into gardening with Dobbies Garden Centres. As stroke survivor, Jonathan Jones, explains: “It helps my self-esteem, it helps my mood. I look at my Fitbit, and it’s amazing how much exercise I’ve done, it also helps me with my diet. Any problems I have just fade away when you’re on your hands and knees digging weeds out. It just helps you feel better. “I would recommend an allotment garden to anybody. We had a lot of support to do this. We got advice from Dobbies and the other allotment gardeners here. I’ve also been helped by other allotment gardeners to build some covers for our raised beds to help in the fight against pests. “We’ve managed to plant potatoes, cabbage, beetroot, brussel sprouts, and onions so far this year. We’ve also got raspberry and gooseberry bushes, plus red currants and strawberries on the go, so hoping for a bumper crop. We’ve really built the allotment up, and it’s a wonderful thing to do!” Starting a physical activity can help your fitness and wellbeing. If you’re new to physical activity and movement, start slowly and build up. You may need to think carefully about any challenges you may face, such as lifting, sourcing materials, balancing or working from a tabletop. This could mean learning to do something differently. If you’ve had a stroke, an occupational therapist might be able to help you, or you could contact our Stroke Helpline on 0303 3033 100 for more information. If soil covered fingers aren’t for you, we also have lots of information about other hobbies and activities, and we’re keen to hear your tips and advice for making the most of this summer safely. You may also enjoy swapping seasonal recipes, gardening tips and challenges with other stroke survivors and carers, you can do this by logging onto My Stroke guide and taking part in the forum. Get involved on My Stroke guide or on Twitter or Facebook, we'd love to hear from you. Next Previous If you are feeling anxious about travelling this summer or the logistics and expense after a stroke feels too much, don’t give up. There’s plenty to enjoy at home.