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Hedgehog Concept Ltd
Hedgehog Concept Ltd
Hedgehog Concept Ltd
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
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Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

People: Ivo Gormley, GoodGym

Founder, GOODGYM

Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 9
GoodGym founder Gormley wanted to tackle isolation in the elderly
GoodGym founder Gormley wanted to tackle isolation in the elderly
More than a million people say they are always, or often, lonely. Loneliness and isolation is such a huge and invisible problem

What is GoodGym?
We combine exercise with doing good deeds. There are two concepts: the first is Coach Runs, where people run to visit an old person on a regular basis – we refer to them as their coach, on account of the fact that they provide ongoing motivation. Or the second, which is called Missions, where groups of runners help with a community project or a household job, like sorting out an overgrown garden or painting a community centre. We also run in groups to help community projects.

How did it come about?
After I left university I stopped doing sport and missed both the exercise and social aspect. I needed motivation to start exercising again, so I began running to see an older neighbour a couple of times a week, stopping for a chat and taking him a newspaper. He was an ex-soldier and gave me tips on how to build up my fitness.

In 2009 I started to think about extending this idea more widely, as loneliness and isolation is such a huge and invisible problem – according to Age UK, more than one million older people say they are always, or often, lonely.

I contacted organisations who work with old people, like The Red Cross and Age UK and set up a basic website, to try to match runners and old people. In 2013 I started working on it full time.

What was the main challenge in setting it up?
The biggest challenge is having to DBS check everyone to make sure they are appropriate, so we sometimes lose people in the sign up process. Other than that the challenges are getting the idea across to people and then matching people in the same area, with the same availability, without keeping either party waiting too long. If we had more runners, we could find more coaches.

How is it funded?
We’re a registered charity, so it’s all free to participate in. Many runners make donations and some coaches do, we also get small grants from local authorities and have received Lottery funding. We’re also now sponsored by BT and New Balance.

How fast are you growing?
We currently have around 4,000 members but it’s growing all the time as we actively spread into more cities: we’re now setting up in Norwich, Birmingham and Cardiff. We’re aiming to be in every UK city in the next two years.

Who does GoodGym appeal to?
All standards of runners, it’s a great way to find extra motivation to exercise.

Do you have plans to further diversify or expand going forward?
No, we’ll stick with what we’re doing and get better at it. Parkrun really inspires me, it’s an incredible and revolutionary organisation in the fitness world. They’ve stuck to one thing and focused on doing it really well and they work collaboratively with the community, so it’s very flexible and open.

How can gyms engage with your scheme?
Some gym operators, including Better, have been supportive by letting our runners use their facilities to meet up. It would be great if operators could collaborate with us and market our work to their members, who could do a Coach Run as another of their weekly workouts, or sign up for a one off Mission. It’s a great way to keep workouts varied and keep people engaged.

What achievements are you most proud of?
The culture that we’ve created. Everyone is so friendly and supportive of each other and it’s a wonderful thing to be able to help people who are living on their own.

Both parties get something from the arrangement. Our evaluation has shown that it improves the wellbeing of both the runners and the coaches, with 93 per cent of runners saying it increased their motivation to exercise. It gives both sides a sense of purpose.

The coaches benefit from the company and the structure. People have said that GoodGym has given them hope, or changed their perception of young people.

It’s also helped ease social isolation: we’ve had instances where the old people have been hospitalised and the runners are the only people who visit them. I’m most proud of the ways in which GoodGym has helped people connect.

Find out more: goodgym.org

If you would like to get each issue of HCM magazine sent direct to you for FREE, plus the weekly HCM ezine, sign up now!
Missions allow a group of runners to help with a project
Missions allow a group of runners to help with a project
Some gyms have become involved by allowing meet-ups for runners
Some gyms have become involved by allowing meet-ups for runners
Both runners and
the elderly benefit
from the scheme
Both runners and the elderly benefit from the scheme
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/576349_683520.jpg
Need a new reason to run? This month, we met Ivo Gormley, founder of GoodGym, who is helping people combine exercise with good deeds...
People
Our COVID-19 measures make our clubs significantly safer than any other public space
People
HCM people

Jo Smallwood

general manager, Oldham Leisure Centre
We saw the opportunity to initiate new partnerships with the Oldham Foodbank to help local residents during the COVID-19 crisis. We can’t serve our community in the way we would usually do, so we’ve moved resources to help where people need us most
People
HCM people

Ben Lucas

Founder, Flow Athletic, Sydney
We advise our Flow Athletes to complete classes at a ratio of one yoga class to one strength class to one cardio class. This combination has very positive effects
Features
Supplier showcase
Working with Precor, Aberdeen Sports Village has undergone a £500k overhaul to strengthen the user experience and put digital connectivity at the core of its offering
Features
Talking Point
The fitness industry has shown incredible flexibility during lockdown, pivoting to digital to keep people active. But as lockdowns end, we ask what impact the pandemic will have on facility provision
Features
Strength
It’s considered a fundamental part of our fitness routines by medical professionals, but many exercisers, particularly women, are still put off by strength training. We asked leading suppliers what they’re doing to champion strength
Features
Staff welfare
As staff and members prepare to return to the gym, Dr Dane Vishnubala gives advice to operators on gearing up to offer them mental health support
Features
Statistics
ukactive, 4global and partners have modelled the likely recovery from the lockdown. Ed Hubbard outlines the numbers
Features
Training
Balance training is set to become a major fitness trend, with exercisers increasingly appreciating the benefits of having a strong core and good balance, particularly as they age. Lauren Health-Jones rounds up the latest product releases
Features
Reopening
David Lloyd Leisure has launched a raft of outdoor classes, including an enhanced role for its Battlebox concept, as Liz Terry reports
Features
Latest News
A free-to-access training platform has launched to help the sport and fitness workforce confidently return ...
Latest News
Glasgow Life, which runs leisure and culture facilities on behalf of Glasgow City Council, has ...
Latest News
Fitness equipment firm Nautilus Inc is looking for a buyer for its commercial equipment brand ...
Latest News
Technogym has announced the launch of live streaming and on-demand classes. The new content will ...
Latest News
A number of gym operators are concerned that local lockdowns could come into effect in ...
Latest News
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that gyms may be able to reopen in a ...
Latest News
UK consumer confidence has improved significantly since the beginning of the lockdown, with a fifth ...
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Fisikal chosen as tech partner for ‘JP4’; new health app from fitness expert, Jessie Pavelka
Fitness expert and television host, Jessie Pavelka has collaborated with Fisikal, experts in digital management solutions, to create the new JP4 app, a premium 12-week personal health and fitness transformation programme that takes the user on a journey of change through four key elements of health.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Incorpore and MoveGB ink groundbreaking partnership to transform corporate wellness offering
Incorpore and MoveGB have entered into a landmark partnership, combining the UK’s largest provider of corporate gym memberships with the nation’s biggest network of classes.
Video Gallery
Technogym mywellness app
Technogym
Improve your training experience. All your data in a single app. Read more
More videos:
Company profiles
Company profile: Hedgehog Concept Ltd
Ground breaking leisure and fitness club management software. Software that has incisive focus on the ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Legend Club Management Systems (UK) Ltd
Legend provides the leading software solution for driving improvements in leisure operations. We deliver savings ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Whole body cryotherapy
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab: Whole body cryotherapy
Fitness Software
FunXtion International BV: Fitness Software
Direct debit solutions
Harlands Group: Direct debit solutions
Management software
Fisikal: Management software
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Fitness equipment
Stages Cycling: Fitness equipment
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Design consultants
Zynk Design Consultants: Design consultants
Property & Tenders
Greywell, Hampshire
Barnsgrove Health and Wellness Club
Property & Tenders
Derby City Council
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
22-23 Sep 2020
Heythrop Park, United Kingdom
Diary dates
17-23 Oct 2020
Pinggu, Beijing, China
Diary dates
27-30 Oct 2020
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
03-06 Nov 2020
Online,
Diary dates
27-28 Nov 2020
Athena, Leicester, United Kingdom
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates

features

People: Ivo Gormley, GoodGym

Founder, GOODGYM

Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 9
GoodGym founder Gormley wanted to tackle isolation in the elderly
GoodGym founder Gormley wanted to tackle isolation in the elderly
More than a million people say they are always, or often, lonely. Loneliness and isolation is such a huge and invisible problem

What is GoodGym?
We combine exercise with doing good deeds. There are two concepts: the first is Coach Runs, where people run to visit an old person on a regular basis – we refer to them as their coach, on account of the fact that they provide ongoing motivation. Or the second, which is called Missions, where groups of runners help with a community project or a household job, like sorting out an overgrown garden or painting a community centre. We also run in groups to help community projects.

How did it come about?
After I left university I stopped doing sport and missed both the exercise and social aspect. I needed motivation to start exercising again, so I began running to see an older neighbour a couple of times a week, stopping for a chat and taking him a newspaper. He was an ex-soldier and gave me tips on how to build up my fitness.

In 2009 I started to think about extending this idea more widely, as loneliness and isolation is such a huge and invisible problem – according to Age UK, more than one million older people say they are always, or often, lonely.

I contacted organisations who work with old people, like The Red Cross and Age UK and set up a basic website, to try to match runners and old people. In 2013 I started working on it full time.

What was the main challenge in setting it up?
The biggest challenge is having to DBS check everyone to make sure they are appropriate, so we sometimes lose people in the sign up process. Other than that the challenges are getting the idea across to people and then matching people in the same area, with the same availability, without keeping either party waiting too long. If we had more runners, we could find more coaches.

How is it funded?
We’re a registered charity, so it’s all free to participate in. Many runners make donations and some coaches do, we also get small grants from local authorities and have received Lottery funding. We’re also now sponsored by BT and New Balance.

How fast are you growing?
We currently have around 4,000 members but it’s growing all the time as we actively spread into more cities: we’re now setting up in Norwich, Birmingham and Cardiff. We’re aiming to be in every UK city in the next two years.

Who does GoodGym appeal to?
All standards of runners, it’s a great way to find extra motivation to exercise.

Do you have plans to further diversify or expand going forward?
No, we’ll stick with what we’re doing and get better at it. Parkrun really inspires me, it’s an incredible and revolutionary organisation in the fitness world. They’ve stuck to one thing and focused on doing it really well and they work collaboratively with the community, so it’s very flexible and open.

How can gyms engage with your scheme?
Some gym operators, including Better, have been supportive by letting our runners use their facilities to meet up. It would be great if operators could collaborate with us and market our work to their members, who could do a Coach Run as another of their weekly workouts, or sign up for a one off Mission. It’s a great way to keep workouts varied and keep people engaged.

What achievements are you most proud of?
The culture that we’ve created. Everyone is so friendly and supportive of each other and it’s a wonderful thing to be able to help people who are living on their own.

Both parties get something from the arrangement. Our evaluation has shown that it improves the wellbeing of both the runners and the coaches, with 93 per cent of runners saying it increased their motivation to exercise. It gives both sides a sense of purpose.

The coaches benefit from the company and the structure. People have said that GoodGym has given them hope, or changed their perception of young people.

It’s also helped ease social isolation: we’ve had instances where the old people have been hospitalised and the runners are the only people who visit them. I’m most proud of the ways in which GoodGym has helped people connect.

Find out more: goodgym.org

If you would like to get each issue of HCM magazine sent direct to you for FREE, plus the weekly HCM ezine, sign up now!
Missions allow a group of runners to help with a project
Missions allow a group of runners to help with a project
Some gyms have become involved by allowing meet-ups for runners
Some gyms have become involved by allowing meet-ups for runners
Both runners and
the elderly benefit
from the scheme
Both runners and the elderly benefit from the scheme
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/576349_683520.jpg
Need a new reason to run? This month, we met Ivo Gormley, founder of GoodGym, who is helping people combine exercise with good deeds...
Latest News
A free-to-access training platform has launched to help the sport and fitness workforce confidently return ...
Latest News
Glasgow Life, which runs leisure and culture facilities on behalf of Glasgow City Council, has ...
Latest News
Fitness equipment firm Nautilus Inc is looking for a buyer for its commercial equipment brand ...
Latest News
Technogym has announced the launch of live streaming and on-demand classes. The new content will ...
Latest News
A number of gym operators are concerned that local lockdowns could come into effect in ...
Latest News
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that gyms may be able to reopen in a ...
Latest News
UK consumer confidence has improved significantly since the beginning of the lockdown, with a fifth ...
Latest News
The PGA Tour has recently bought 1,000 Whoop bands for its golfers, after PGA Tour ...
Latest News
ukactive has announced that Active Uprising and the National Summit are going digital as part ...
Latest News
Industry body ukactive has today (1 July) hosted a delegation of government and public health ...
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Fisikal chosen as tech partner for ‘JP4’; new health app from fitness expert, Jessie Pavelka
Fitness expert and television host, Jessie Pavelka has collaborated with Fisikal, experts in digital management solutions, to create the new JP4 app, a premium 12-week personal health and fitness transformation programme that takes the user on a journey of change through four key elements of health.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Incorpore and MoveGB ink groundbreaking partnership to transform corporate wellness offering
Incorpore and MoveGB have entered into a landmark partnership, combining the UK’s largest provider of corporate gym memberships with the nation’s biggest network of classes.
Video Gallery
Technogym mywellness app
Technogym
Improve your training experience. All your data in a single app. Read more
More videos:
Company profiles
Company profile: Hedgehog Concept Ltd
Ground breaking leisure and fitness club management software. Software that has incisive focus on the ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Legend Club Management Systems (UK) Ltd
Legend provides the leading software solution for driving improvements in leisure operations. We deliver savings ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Whole body cryotherapy
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab: Whole body cryotherapy
Fitness Software
FunXtion International BV: Fitness Software
Direct debit solutions
Harlands Group: Direct debit solutions
Management software
Fisikal: Management software
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Fitness equipment
Stages Cycling: Fitness equipment
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Design consultants
Zynk Design Consultants: Design consultants
Property & Tenders
Greywell, Hampshire
Barnsgrove Health and Wellness Club
Property & Tenders
Derby City Council
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
22-23 Sep 2020
Heythrop Park, United Kingdom
Diary dates
17-23 Oct 2020
Pinggu, Beijing, China
Diary dates
27-30 Oct 2020
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
03-06 Nov 2020
Online,
Diary dates
27-28 Nov 2020
Athena, Leicester, United Kingdom
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
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Hedgehog Concept Ltd
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