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The handbook developed by the MENTA50+ project provides a theoretical and practical background for interested stakeholders (e.g. facilitators) who would like to promote, enhance and protect the mental fitness and mental wellbeing of older people. The handbook will help them to deliver activities for older people on mental wellbeing and fitness. In addition, it provides the background for a 30 hour learning activity, e.g. a training course.

The handbook is structured in the following way: First, the generic section and theoretical chapter 2 inform the reader as to why promoting mental fitness is needed in ageing societies. Based on scientific evidence it is argued that the main issue regarding ageing societies is cognitive stimulation.

A classification of cognitive stimulation on the basis of training cognitive ageing competence is therefore developed and explained. This includes functions which often decline in the process of ageing. In the context of learning, different levels of social interaction to enable and promote exchange between learners is referred to.

Following this chapter 3 deals offers  practical activities which help promote the mental fitness of older people. These are presented through five different modules, one about mental fitness itself and four other related key topics:

1.  Mental fitness

2.  Stress management

3.  Social networks

4.  Nutrition

5.  Physical exercises

In each module a short summary, some definitions and reference to its importance for mental fitness are outlined. The main content incorporates a number of relevant examples which are presented in detail and structured through the use of descriptors designed to be helpful for facilitators to prepare and implement the exercise in practice.

To access  the complete handbook, please click here.