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08 Aug 2018 59

Fitness coach works to reduce social isolation in LGBT community

Research from a National LGBT Partnership has found that levels of physical activity amongst the LGBT community are considerably lower than the general population.

Results show that 55 per cent of LGBT men were not active enough to maintain good health, compared to 33 per cent of men in the general population, while 56 per cent of LGBT women were found to have an unhealthy level of fitness compared to 45 per cent of women in the general population.

Furthermore, in a recent report published by Stonewall – the leading UK LGBT charity –  statistics show that one in eight LGBT people avoid participating in physical activities such as going to the gym or attending sports groups due to a fear of being discriminated against or harassed. This equates to 12 per cent of the LGBT community in Britain. 

With last weekend marking the the annual Brighton Pride celebrations, an increasing number of LGBT focused sports and fitness groups have been formed in the city to help eradicate this issue.

One of which is a new spinning-based fitness group called Spinder which is targeted towards the LGBT and gay-friendly community.  Founded by LGBT fitness coach Richard Allsop, Spinder aims to eradicate adult loneliness and isolation within the LGBT community, with a strong emphasis placed on creating a social, welcoming environment for those with any level of fitness to attend. Richard said:

“There is a definite need for organisation such as Spinder and coaches like myself as I believe we are well placed to help people like us in the LGBT community. Connecting with a coach who is really able to understand you is key to creating a positive, nurturing environment.

“People won’t always remember what you tell them, but they will remember how you make them feel. I try to thread a feel good factor in everything I do in Spinder and my fitness practice, which seems to be resonate well with my participants.

“It makes people more likely to keep active if they feel they want to come back which is a great start to improving their physical and mental health.”