Running community GoodGym, who combine getting fit with supporting older people and community projects, will launch in Portsmouth this spring.
- GoodGym Portsmouth will launch in May in partnership with Portsmouth City Council
- Weekly group runs are free and open to all abilities, combining a run with a physical task to help a local community organisation
- Runners can also choose to be paired with an isolated older person that lives nearby and run to visit them each week, or to run to help with basic household and garden tasks.
- GoodGym is proven to reduce isolation and loneliness and to improve wellbeing for all involved.
- Portsmouth residents can find out more and register their interest online: www.goodgym.org/proposals/portsmouth
Instead of running for miles on a treadmill or lifting weights for personal gain, GoodGym runners channel their energy into a workout that benefits people in their community, as well as their own health.
GoodGym group runs involve a short run with a trainer to support a community organisation with a physical task such as planting trees, shifting earth, or clearing derelict land.
In addition to the weekly group runs, GoodGym runners can choose to be paired with an older person and run to see them for a weekly social visit, before running home again. They can also help with one-off household tasks that older people can’t do on their own.
Over 1 million people over 60 say they feel lonely often or some of the time. GoodGym is shown to improve levels of wellbeing and happiness, and to decrease loneliness and isolation. GoodGym takes a unique approach to building community cohesion, promoting fitness and reducing social isolation.
GoodGym Portsmouth has been made possible by a partnership with Portsmouth City Council.
Cllr Luke Stubbs, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Adult Social Care at Portsmouth City Council, said:
"I'm pleased to be supporting GoodGym to launch in Portsmouth. It's been shown to be highly successful elsewhere and will help to boost physical activity in the city whilst supporting our older residents and other community projects. It's great to see so much initial interest and provides a reminder of what a great city we are for coming together to help others."
Ivo Gormley, founder of GoodGym, said:
“GoodGym is a really easy way to integrate doing something for your community into your exercise. If you’re already running then it can only take 15 mins to change your route and drop in to visit an isolated older person. If you’ve never really considered running before, or lack the motivation, then the community that GoodGym provides and the different reasons to run can be a really easy route in.“