Shop now open! Share your love of music and support Playlist for Life. Visit now.

Shop now open! Share your love of music and support Playlist for Life. Visit now.

Sparking memories through sport and music

Sports-themed reminiscence groups in Fife have been using music to build rapport and confidence with their members.  

Sporting Memories Foundation Scotland is a charity and social enterprise supporting people who live with dementia, depression and loneliness. 

After becoming part of our Help Point network in December 2021, groups in Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy and Glenrothes in Fife have been incorporating music into their weekly meetings. They have found that using sports and music in activity and reminiscence sessions was a game changer in bringing people together.  

“We took our time introducing Playlist for Life, adapting some of the concepts through our sporting activities. As a result we’ve observed how greatly music assists those with dementia in practice.

I can testify that it has helped bring everyone closer as a group. It has been interesting seeing how much the group has in common with regards to music tastes and by talking and listening to tunes has made for great rapport building.”

Gordon speaking at a Playlist for Life conferece

With support from fellow volunteer John Allan, they have hosted sporting-themed music quizzes and activities with different musical themes. This has helped to draw out memories from those attending, including the tale of one gentleman’s summers in Switzerland, which inspired John to find music from that chapter of his life and gift it to him as a surprise on his 90th birthday.   

John also puts together a variety of playlists for the exercise routines that form part of the sessions at Dunfermline. This helped one gentleman with dementia in particular who was having difficulty engaging with the exercise routine. When the music was playing it encouraged him to be more active in the session. 

Word has spread to other clubs. In Motherwell, a volunteer was using music in a session attended by Community Club Coordinator Jim Purvis who told us “Everyone appeared to be enjoying themselves-especially one long standing member whose dementia has deteriorated to the extent that he has difficulty articulating now.” 

If your group or organisation offers free support to people living with dementia, you can join the Playlist for Life Help Point network.

Find out more and submit your Help Point application.