Determined to find a solution to inactive ageing, two sports science students from the University of Strasbourg, France, founded Siel Bleu
in 1997. From their studies, Jean Daniel Muller and Jean Michel Richard understood that physical activity is as equally important to older adults as it is to younger populations, and so they piloted tailored exercise programmes in 12 nursing homes across Strasbourg.
The pilot programme was so successful that 11 of the 12 nursing homes continued with the Siel Bleu classes. A number of weeks later, our founders received a call from the Director of the 12th nursing home. Such was the popularity of the classes, that upon the request of the residents, the programme recommenced.
Siel Bleu scaled rapidly across France and now delivers adapted exercise programmes in two thirds of French nursing homes. As social entrepreneurs, we want to share our solution to inactive ageing, and so Siel Bleu has expanded into Belgium, Spain and Ireland in 2010.
Siel Bleu Ireland History
- 1997 Siel Bleu France founded
- 2010 Siel Bleu Ireland established
– 2011 Awarded grant from Community Foundation of Ireland for a Dublin pilot programme in 3 nursing homes
- 2011 First official Siel Bleu programmes delivered in Dublin
- 2012 Awarded a sustainability Grant by the Danone Ecosystem through Nutricia Ireland
- 2012 First expansion of programmes outside Dublin in Callan, Kilkenny, May 2012
- 2012 First community programme delivered in Bray in May 2012
- 2012 Siel Bleu was operating in 19 nursing homes by December
- 2013 HAPPIER Study commenced in 32 nursing homes across Europe including 8 in Ireland
- 2013 As of December Siel Bleu was delivering programmes in 30 Irish nursing homes
- 2014 Completion of the HAPPIER Study
- 2014 Took part in the European funded Get Physical project
- 2014 In May, Thomas McCabe took over as National Manager of Siel Bleu Ireland
- 2014 Established a new Board of Directors
- 2014 Finalist in Irish Businesses Young Entrepreneurs Award
- 2014 Siel Bleu started working with 20 new nursing homes in 2014 total, 50 Irish nursing homes
- 2015 Finalist in the Arthur Guiness Projects, Makers of More competition
- 2015 As of March 2015, Siel Bleu is working with 1700 participants