Veteran ref encourages staying active

Referee Donnie MacKinnon still runs the line at Junior games at the age of 71.
Referee Donnie MacKinnon still runs the line at Junior games at the age of 71.

Referee Donnie MacKinnon from Motherwell is urging people over 50 across Lanarkshire to show inactivity the red card.

Despite now being in his 70s Donnie, a top whistler for over four decades, still runs the line at junior games.

He is encouraging people to sign up to the Living It Up website, an innovative online platform which is part of a new programme geared to improving the lives of older people, including those at risk of falls, which is being implemented across Lanarkshire.

SmartCare involves 30 European partners including Scotland with North and South Lanarkshire Councils and NHS Lanarkshire participating in the scheme.

Living It Up provides the opportunity for members to link in with local activities, resources, health advice and short film clips.

Donnie, who still trains three times a week, reckons it’s a resource well worth flagging up.

He said: “As people get older, let’s face it, you tend to slow down. You tend to bump into things and falls become a risk to health and mobility. Keeping active, and minimising those risks, is very important to me.

“Living It Up is a great site for people who want to stay active or those who want to become more active and linking into key supports that help you face up to the inevitable challenges of growing older.

“There’s Lanarkshire specific news on events and supports you can access and also opportunities where you can help others, which is vitally important. I’ve also found the basic, essential advice on avoiding falls very helpful.”