To promote its ambition of getting ‘more people, more active’, Valley Leisure has added special new machines to Andover Leisure Centre so that disabled people can stay fit and enjoy the gym environment more.
Inclusive Fitness Initiative (IFI) accredited machines let people with limited movement take part in physical activity with more ease and less worry.
“When you say you want to help make more people become more active, you have to think beyond people in the mainstream,” said Chris Attrill from Valley Leisure, the charitable trust that runs the leisure centre on behalf of Test Valley Borough Council.
“Fitness is such a good and positive part of our everyday lives. We want it to be available to everyone, and we’ll do whatever we can to make it happen. The new IFI accredited equipment is part of making that ambition a reality,” said Chris.
The kit, which can be used by both disabled people and those without extra physical challenges, is durable and easy to use.
The IFI accredited treadmill gives visual and audio feedback at the start and end of the workout, which is especially beneficial to people who can’t hear or see too well. And colour contrasted buttons for high visibility, a safety cord, and running deck strips, make the machine extra safe to use.
The two types of cycle machines both have wider pedals with heel straps to stop people’s feet slipping off. And other special features include seat adjustment pulleys for ease of access and raised images on the main controls, which can be felt and act in the same way as Braille.
The upright cycle also has tactile, laser-cut numbers on the seat posts to help visually impaired riders.
Through the recent £250, 000 gym refurbishment, the centre also introduced a functional training station.
Functional training exercises help control and adapt movement, and improve balance, posture, and muscle flexibility, all of which support people to do daily tasks such as heavy lifting, stretching, and kneeling down.
The leisure centre is organising free tours so people can experience the new equipment for themselves. To arrange a tour call the centre on 01264 347100.
Valley Leisure website: www.valleyleisure.co.uk