Croydon Council, the Mayor of London and GoodGym aim to get 500 runners helping their communities and getting fit
Everyone wants to get fit these days, and rightly so, so why not harness all that energy into doing social good? That’s just what GoodGym is up to.
Croydon Council and The Mayor of London have teamed up with running community GoodGym to help it expand its operations and make it easier than ever to combine getting fit and doing good. GoodGym Croydon will be launching on 17 May at 6.45pm.
Over the next year:
– the project will support 500 runners to do social good while training;
– runners will run to provide support to isolated older people; and
– runners will run to do manual labour for community projects.
The first task for the runners will be a visit to Croydon Arena in South Norwood to help spruce up the bikes used on the exercise referral scheme and to tidy up the bike store.
Between 29% and 46% of people over 60 say they feel lonely often or some of the time. Meanwhile, only a third of the population is doing at least one session of moderate intensity physical activity per week. GoodGym provides an innovative and cost-effective solution to both these issues.
As founder Ivo Gormley explains: “GoodGym is a really easy way to integrate doing something for your community into your exercise. If you’re already running then it can take only 15 mins to change your route slightly and drop in to visit an isolated older person. If you’ve never really considered running before, or lack the motivation, then the community that GoodGym provide and the different reasons to run can be a really easy route in.
“Everyone wants to do a bit more exercise and everyone wants to get involved in the community they live in. GoodGym means you can do both at the same time.”
Croydon Council is backing GoodGym as part of its Heart Town initiative with the British Heart Foundation, helping residents to fight heart disease.
Councillor Louisa Woodley, cabinet member for families, health and social care, said: “The double benefits of GoodGym are good news for Croydon. This is a fantastic and unique opportunity for local people to look after their health while helping others by doing good deeds such as changing light bulbs, tidying gardens or clearing store rooms.
“All abilities can take part and we hope our residents’ community spirit will motivate them to sign up for the borough’s opening run on Tuesday 17 May.”
GoodGym Croydon will kick off at 6.45pm on Tuesday, 17 May at The Community Space, Bernard Weatherill House, 8 Mint Walk, Croydon CR0 1EA.
From Tuesday, 24 May all weekly runs will start at 6.45pm from Solutions Gym, 1 Lansdowne Road, Croydon CR9 2BN
GoodGym runs are free to participate in, you can just turn up.
GoodGym Croydon is always open to new members, whatever their fitness level.
GoodGym is a fast-growing community of runners. Founded in 2009, its members combine good deeds such as manual labour for community organisations and visits to support isolated older people with their runs. GoodGym is recognised by Runners World, leading think-tanks and the government as an important innovation. Now numbering more than 1,300 members, it is expanding rapidly from its roots in Tower Hamlets to other London boroughs and beyond. GoodGym’s team includes some of the best running coaches in the UK. It aims to launch in a further 20 cities in the UK in 2016. GoodGym’s administration team is a non-profit company and is registered with the Charity Commission.