Hear what our members have to say about Active Women reading the Case Studies below!
I started accessing the Active Community Fitness Group sessions just over 12 months ago in Feb 2016. I wanted to to be able to take some time out for myself, as well as try and improve my fitness whilst I was on maternity leave from work and I found out via Facebook that there was an aerobics class with creche facilty (vital to enable me to attend!) and was instantly made welcome by the instructor (Sally). The session was great and I had had a chance to do something for myself for an hour,
I looked at what other classes were available and started attending more and more. The classes were held in public buildings (town halls, community centres, schools) which makes it instantly less intimidating for those who don’t feel comfortable going to gyms. I found all the instructors to be friendly and great at making you feel part of something. The social media interaction from the instructors has also been a fun and inclusive part of my journey. Once you have attended a session and given your details, the instructors tag you in the ‘announcements’ on Facebook and encourage you to come to them that evening. It is then followed up by a congratulatory message to all those who attended – again making you feel part of a community.
There have been several benefits to my life due to being involved with Active Community Fitness Group. Because of the commitment and creativity of the instructors, I am still attending the sessions regularly 12 months on and I have never been fitter. The fresh, original sessions are constantly changing and have kept me interested as well as pushing me to challenge myself on a regular basis. I would encourage and recommend anybody to attend the Active Community Fitness sessions for both body and mind and hope that I can continue to be a part of it.
I joined Active Women as a member in 2012 after having my first baby. Previously being active I enjoyed going to the gym and running – this all changed after having Poppy. I lost all my confidence in being able to step into a gym, a class or even go out for a run. I felt very unfit and the weight piled on. One night when I was up feeding I noticed an Active Women group based in Hyndburn designed to get you back into exercise with a wide variety of classes at an affordable rate. I coaxed my friend into coming with me and I went to my first Zumba class. WOW – what a buzz! The instructor was friendly, supportive and the class just had a welcoming feel to it. Not one for coordination but I continued to attend this class for the music, the hour to myself and for the great workout it gave me.
From this class it gave me to confidence to then join slimming world to look at my diet and with the two the weight started to drop off. As my confidence built I started to attend more classes including, Pump, Bootcamp and Body Blast – all fabulous instructors. I managed to hit my goal weight and even started running on my own again.
In 2013 Active Women asked if I would like to volunteer for them, after everything they had done for me how could I refuse! I supported in classes taking the register, counting money, supporting local community events and eventually was given the opportunity to take my exercise to music course. Having not done any additional learning since university I was dubious I would be able to pass. My mentors were fantastic with coursework, staying behind after classes, spending their weekends going through choreography and I finally passed and could start teaching! The first class I co-taught was Bootcamp – I was hooked from that very first session! Again my mentor supported me throughout and gave me feedback/ideas at the end of each session. I used my knowledge of how I felt when I first joined to engage with the people that came and tailor the workouts for them. The buzz I got from knowing that I was helping more people on their journey was and still is the best part of this job!
Following on from this I was asked if I would like to set up a run group as I have a passion for running. I took my run leader course at the end of 2013 and set up my first run in 2014. We are now in our fourth year and I have mentored a further 5 soon to be 6 Run Leaders. We have gone from strength to strength learning and growing. We have gone from 1 run to 3 runs a week and average 50 people per run. This has created a real connection with my local community and helped us raise money for numerous local charities.
I am now an employed member of staff that runs 3 classes per week and the run group. When I look back from where I started I never knew that it would lead into so many opportunities and give me so much! I have recently applied to become a Police Officer and many of the examples I used were to do with my work with Active Community Fitness. I have loved every second of being of this project, team and I can’t wait to help and support more people on their journey.
My first introduction to the Active Women project was back in the early part of the year 2013. As a runner and cyclist I was very keen on keeping myself fit, but in February of this year I found myself with a torn ligament and was unable to run , I could cycle but that wasn’t enough . Prior to having my children i had attended various fitness classes, so with my injury I thought I’d try other options to keep myself fit. I discovered the active women timetable and found that the times and variety of classes were suitable for me as a working mum . I started to attend 3-4 classes per week. Daytime and evening fitted perfect with my lifestyle , I was able to work through my injury and still keep fit.
I got to know the instructors very well and one evening j was approached and asked if I would be interested in becoming a instructor myself . This really appealed to me so I gave it some thought and decided I would go for it . I passed all my exams by November the same year and began teaching Bootcamp in January 2014, by this time I had got back into my running but still attended some cases and taught my class once a week. In February of 2014 I was asked if i would be able to volunteer to help with the growing run group that worked along side the Active Women Project . As a dear passion of mine I accepted right away and went on to do my run leader course .
I’m still currently doing both groups every week , I have made some amazing friends, and it has opened up lots of doors in my life regarding fitness and also social elements. I consider myself very lucky to have had this opportunity to join these projects and I’m hoping that the future will be as successful and enjoyable as the past 3 years have been.
From leaving school at 16 years I battled with my weight . My friends mum got me in to jogging. From there I loved to jog and keep fit . I joined a gym as well for a few years but never had the confidence to ask for help or try any classes . I lost a close friend at the age of 23 to cancer which made me want to help raise money for her charity, Catherine’s Crusaders . I trained to do the Blackpool half marathon . From here I still wanted more in my fitness but wasn’t confident enough to do anything about it so for years I ran on my own and did exercise DVDs at home . My weight was up and down and I felt keeping motivated was really heard . In winter 2013 I was at work talking to a client , I was saying it was too cold to run and I’m loosing motivation to exercise. She told me about a pump class at Accrington Town Hall on a Monday . It was all women and really friendly .
Joining Active Community Fitness , I was really nervous so I went with a friend . The instructor was lovely and made me feel really welcome . The ladies in the class where great, really friendly and I felt comfortable instantly. I loved the class and carried on going . I watched my body start to change shape and I was amazed ! No DVDs or running miles ever did this to my body. After a few months I started to go on my own and it didn’t bother me. I then started to get brave and join other classes. My confidence changed and I would talk to people and push myself more. I found these classes where helping my running as well .
In 2015 one of the instructors approached me and asked me if I’d like to train as an instructor. I couldn’t believe it as I would never of thought I was good enough to teach fitness . I said yes and started the training. I’ve had a fantastic journey as an instructor it has made me fit, confident and I have begun to love myself. I’ve met so many amazing people along the way and some are now very good friends . The support of the team and our members is amazing and I’m very proud to say I’m one of the team. I love working with real people that believe they can’t do it. I love watching their journey and saying “Yes you can”. Active Community Fitness is about giving people confidence to move on in fitness. The gym isn’t for everyone and I feel I wouldn’t have come this far without them .