#GoodNewsCymru | Social enterprise

Neath Afan Gymnastics gets families moving at home

Having closed their doors and cancelled all classes since the beginning of lockdown, Neath Afan Gymnastics Club have provided an innovative solution to maintain fitness levels at home.

By Mike Erskine · May 7, 2020

See this page in: Cymraeg

Neath Afan Gymnastics Club is a social enterprise that operates two facilities in the Neath Port Talbot area and relies on its membership fees to keep both facilities open.

The centre, which typically sees around 800 people through their doors each week, from children as young as 8 weeks to 18 years, have been using Facebook as the primary means of communication for keeping in touch and engaging with their existing customers during lockdown.

They are currently putting out a programme of six things parents can encourage children to do every day around gymnastics, general fitness and life skills.

This programme not only encourages daily physical activity while we all spend more at home, but also helps ensure that competitive gymnasts can maintain their physical condition and return to skills development once lockdown is lifted.

Outside of their main Facebook page Neath Afan Gymnastics Club, they have created a separate group called Coronafit for parents to post videos and photos of their children doing the activities each day, which are then compiled into longer videos at the end of the week to give a sense of reward.

 

The club has also offered reduced membership fees, free access to the e-gym classroom Flair Gymnastics for paying members, and a thank you package that includes freezing annual membership fees and doubling classes to make up for those that were missed once they can reopen.

Despite the challenges, the support they have received has been highly positive. The Facebook page has grown from 3,000 followers to around 4,500 in just a few weeks and they have succeeded in maintaining high levels of engagement, both with parents and children, by diversifying into whole family activities and innovative approaches to physical activity such as household chores and life skills alongside gymnastics.

All the lovely feedback we’ve been getting and the testimonials about how much people are enjoying it has been amazing. And the fact that we’ve retained 70% of our recreation members paying full fees through our online programme of activity is a pretty tremendous achievement. Going forward, we plan to continue posting online content to encourage more people to continue doing fitness activities at home.

All of the online activity will be quite significant even as we get back to business as parents hesitate to send their children back into close environments. We’ve actually just created our new online programme called Homenastics, compiling all the footage we have right now, which we’re excited to share with new and existing customers so they can continue doing gymnastics at home.

Founder and Coaching Director, Nicola Lewis

Neath Afan Gymnastics has received business consultancy support and advice from Social Business Wales, funded by the European Regional Development Fund and delivered by the Wales Co-operative Centre.

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