Shropshire fitness club boss backs report findings

The report released by ukactive – a not-for-profit membership body for the physical activity sector –revealed 78 per cent of people take out a gym membership to improve their mental health and wellbeing.That’s followed by improving their overall confidence (75 per cent) and improving their sleep (66 per cent).Next on ukactive’s list, from a poll of more than 2,000 adults carried out by Savanta, is managing a short or long-term health condition (55 per cent) and helping them to make new friends (43 per cent).Dave Courteen, the managing director of The Shrewsbury Club, which has a membership of 6,000 people, agrees with the main reasons why people are keen to build and sustain active and healthy lifestyles.He added: “This new research from ukactive backs up the fact that people are embracing the benefits of exercise and activity to improve their mental health and general wellbeing, including managing anxiety and/or depression.“Joining a health club or a gym is not just about the benefits of exercise because there’s so many different ways that people can exercise and lead a more active lifestyle.“Deciding to do it in a club setting alongside like-minded people works really well for many and is extremely motivational.“It also provides the support services of our wellness system app, which logs what people are doing and allows them to see how their activity levels are progressing.“Our instructors provide members with support in the gym, while group exercise has also seen a big growth in recent years and is very popular.”Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, added: “Our gyms and leisure centres will be busy this month as the nation heads down to their local facility to begin or continue their fitness journey.“Our research is a clear reminder that our facilities are not just locations to build physical fitness but are fundamental places for the population to prioritise their own health and wellbeing as well as managing a range of short and long-term health conditions.“The green shoots of how we seek to improve our poor public health lie in these instinctive public motivations.”That’s why it’s so important that any current or future Government makes the link to fitness and leisure facilities and businesses as a solution to many of the public health issues facing the nation today.”

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