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Britons can't work out their work outs

Virgin Active seeks to tackle gymtimidation and boost gym goers’ confidence with their new Get to Grips classes

01 Sep 2015

  • A quarter of Brits confess they don’t feel clued-up enough on fitness techniques to attend a gym
  • Almost a fifth say they are confounded by the exercise equipment
  • 60% of Brits want to discover new ways to exercise;
  • Brits also shown to worry about not having the right kit and feeling like the only new person in the class

As the second busiest season for joining a health club arrives, a quarter of the nation doesn’t believe they know enough about exercise or fitness to go to a gym or health club, according to new research out today. Almost a fifth (16 per cent) of Britons say they’ve skipped the gym because they’re not sure how to operate any of the equipment and a further 10 per cent are scared that no-one will be on hand to help them.

The research by Virgin Active Health Clubs also reveals that other gym turn offs can include the fear of not having the right kit and feeling like the only new person in the class. Yet, despite a lack of confidence when it comes to embracing exercise, the study shows there is a real appetite to learn. A third (33%) of those canvassed in the poll admit they are keen to pick up hints and tips on how to get the most out of exercising as well getting to grips with using the equipment.

Refresher classes also featured highly on the regular gym goers wish list with 20% interested in re-educating themselves to help them discover new classes and routines.

Having identified the barriers to the nation’s fitness habits, Virgin Active is introducing a new “Get to Grips” programme based on bookable education sessions, held on the gym floor or in a class studio, to give people a taster of different exercise routines. The 30 minute sessions will focus on breaking down these barriers, helping members to get comfortable with new activities and walk away with a plan for themselves so they can get the most out of their workout. Classes will include getting to grips with cardio, abs and core, stretching and self-massage, weight training, functional training and group exercise. All six sessions will be available Virgin Active’s health clubs across the country from 14th September, the classes aim to help thousands with a wish to discover new ways to embrace exercise.

Andy Birch, Head of Fitness at Virgin Active, commented: “Trying something new can be daunting, particularly when you’re around people who look like they are experts. Our “Get to Grips” classes are our way of making sure fun trumps fear in our clubs. Whether you’re a new member or an existing member looking to mix up your routine, these sessions will help you get started”.

“By introducing such an easy way to educate, or re-educate yourself in exercise, we hope to break down barriers and help people discover new ways to stay active. There really are no more reasons to feel gymtimidated!”

Despite many Brits lacking the confidence to join a health club or gym, those considering it admitted that it was the range of facilities and classes on offer that really interested them. 60% of those surveyed wanted to discover new ways to exercise.

“Get to Grips” sessions are launching at Virgin Active clubs from September 14th, for more information visit Virgin Active - Get to Grips

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