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Company founder keen for people of all ages and abilities to Get Sports Inspired

A sports and fitness company based in the borough is calling on people of all ages to Get Sports Inspired and to shrug off the challenges of a desperately difficult year by taking part in exercise classes across the area as well as online.

Gareth Evans founded Get Sports Inspired in the Slough and Burnham area just over two years ago and says the companies aim is to find suitable, fun, and engaging activities for everyone, whether that’s a new mum with her first baby or a more elderly person who hasn’t contemplated attending an exercise class for years.

Their goal is to promote healthy living for the whole family and all ages, and – where possible – to run these sessions for the family together.

Get Sports Inspired was started in August 2018, working with schools in and around the Slough, Maidenhead and Windsor areas but recently they’ve expanded to do some sessions in the Reading area.

Including Gareth, they have four full-time coaches and a team of casual coaches. They run a wide range of classes including fitness bootcamps, personal trainer (PT) sessions, Yoga and Pilates, stretch sessions for the over 60s, boxercise, dance lessons, and PE classes and extra-curricular sessions in schools. The casual coaches tend to run the more conventional sessions including football and cricket, although Gareth’s background is in football coaching.

“Our aim is really simple,” said Gareth. “To get more people, no matter what their age to try something new, get out of the house, off their phones and enjoy meeting new people.

“I’m from a football background and I’ve coached for a number of years with grassroots teams. I just felt there was a gap in the market to help the family and all the generations.

“There are companies that do a fitness bootcamp and they’re great at it, but they only run them for adults. While a football club will only do football sessions for kids, or a dance club just concentrates on dance.

“Our aim is to get everyone into an activity, no matter how old, whether it’s a mummy and baby session and they’re rolling balls and doing a bit of fitness for mums.

“That interaction is so important.”

It’s been a difficult year for many people, in particularly the elderly and more vulnerable in society. However, Get Sports Inspired has been running virtual sessions suitable for those who are shielding or reluctant to go out. Financially, it’s also been a difficult year for the company, with Gareth admitting that profits had taken a hit. But he’s desperate for the company to continue providing sessions for everyone to enjoy and says that in many ways these sessions are more vital than they’ve ever been before.

“We’re going ok,” he added. “It’s obviously taken a bit of a hit this year. We’re still running sessions, we’ve got a new jazz dance class and we’ve got family boxercise, while our football sessions are back up and running.

“As well as the fitness the interaction side is also very important. It can be a lonely place sometimes. We’re really keen on getting people into a session, to just try it and, if they love it they’re going to come back.

“That’s where we started with our over 60s stretch and relax class.

“We’ve got social distancing measures in place and there have been people who have been shielding or not going out. We just want to help people make friends and interact with others.

“You’ve got to adapt. Our price format is quite cheap because we want to ensure that our sessions are accessible for everyone and that money isn’t a problem for people to enjoy it.”

Gareth added: “We’ve tried to do as much as we can online to keep people engaged while they’ve been at home. That’s worked quite well. Now we’re getting new people on board as well.

“For an over 60s class we’ve got four people signed up. It’s a new class and they’re not on Facebook or using social media so that’s spreading through word of mouth. Pilates also worked really well over Zoom.”

Despite the difficulties COVID-19 has presented this year, Get Sports Inspired continues to put on sessions for people of all ages. Through the national lockdown some of those sessions moved online, while others have had to stop or been shelved for the time being. Gareth hopes they’ve managed to keep people engaged and believes in time the company will benefit from the adaptations they’ve had to make due to the virus.

Gareth said: “It’s been a really difficult year. Some of the sessions had to stop.

“For example, our family boxercise, one of the families had five people and it would have been really difficult for them to be in the house doing that with five people. There’s not enough room. It’s just getting the word out there.

“We offer some online stuff now, but some of the older ones couldn’t do it because they don’t have the technology at home.

“That’s a real shame for us. But we’ve been running football centres online giving them ideas of what they can do online.

“People’s eyes have been opened, that you can do these activities in your own home. PE with Joe Wicks was a worldwide phenomenon. People now realise they can do it at home and it can still be exciting, you don’t have to travel far for a venue. We just have to keep on board with it and keep it accessible for all.”

They plan to launch a new lady’s football team in the new year and weekly Bootcamps at a special price of £5 for four sessions in January. There are also personal training sessions that can be done in people’s homes and back gardens for £20.

For more information visit https://getsportsinspired.org.uk or on social media see @GetSportsInspired on Facebook, @GSportsInspired on Twitter and @GetSportsInspired on Instagram.

Alternatively email gareth@getsportsinspired.org.uk or call 07716 618568

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