Ramiz Aziz undergoing a fitness programme developed by Yassine Gharbi at Fujairah Gold’s Gym Club Image Credit: Supplied

Fujairah: A wheelchair-bound septuagenarian in Fujairah has defied the odds to walk again.

Seventy-three-year-old Egyptian Ramiz Aziz, who had been confined to a wheelchair for months, said he overcame his immobility with sheer grit and a customised fitness regimen developed by Gold’s Gym Club.

'It's a miracle'

“This is nothing short of a miracle. I was suffering from severe osteoarthritis and even underwent total knee replacement surgeries in both legs. But nothing seemed to work. In fact, my condition worsened as the two surgeries further weakened my muscles,” said Aziz, who used to work as a landscape engineer.

“I feared I would never get back to my feet. The chronic pain and physical limitations were beginning to take a heavy toll on my self-esteem. That’s when I decided to do something about my condition,” he recalled.

“Luckily I came across the Fujairah branch of Gold’s Gym Club. Initially, I wasn’t sure if I should contact them but when their personal trainer Yassine Gharbi offered to develop a tailor-made fitness programme for me, I thought of giving it a try,” said Aziz.

Intensive fitness regimen

What followed was an intensive six-month workout regimen focussed on endurance, strength, balance, and flexibility.

Gharbi said Aziz’s unwavering determination and steely resolve to overcome his disability rubbed off on him as well.

“His never-say-die attitude motivated me to give my best,” said Gharbi. “The results were dramatic. Soon, Aziz no longer needed a wheelchair and was walking unassisted. He has proved that it’s never too late to set your fitness goals. Aziz is an inspiration to all of us, particularly youngsters, and a fantastic role model,” said Gharbi.

Aziz said he feels like a youngster all over again. “I began my fitness journey at the age of 72. It has been one of the best decisions of my life as getting back on my feet has also boosted my confidence as I am no longer dependent on any one,” he said.