Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Get Fit for Free Are of It; YOU DON'T HAVE TO SPEND A FORTUNE TO KEEP THE WHOLE FAMILY IN SHAPE, SAYS FITNESS EXPERT RUTH LYNCH

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Get Fit for Free Are of It; YOU DON'T HAVE TO SPEND A FORTUNE TO KEEP THE WHOLE FAMILY IN SHAPE, SAYS FITNESS EXPERT RUTH LYNCH

Article excerpt

Byline: Ruth Lynch

PRINCE HARRY attends a PS7,000-a-year gym, it was recently claimed. Yes, exercise and wellbeing are big business - it's a market that's expected to be worth PS22.8 billion by 2020.

Consumer spending on gym membership soared by 44% in 2015 and has been climbing ever since. With healthy cookbooks, boutique gyms, high-end trainers, designer workout gear and a raft of gadgets to track just about every part of your body and workout - it would seem that to get in shape, you need to dig deep.

But that's just not the case. Many people think that to get fit and healthy that they have to spend big, but that's a dangerous myth that needs to be quashed. Becoming healthier can, in many ways, be free and be as simple as adding a ten-minute brisk walk into your daily routine.

JUST MOVE MORE YOU don't actually have to spend a penny on getting fit. To become fitter and get healthier we just need to move more. Some activities, such as walking, running and playing football with the kids are completely free (you might just need to buy/borrow some trainers).

Your local park might have free football and rugby pitches, tennis courts and even a running track if you don't have access to a garden or don't like running on the streets.

You can find innovative and easy ways to add more movement into your day - get off your bus or train a stop early, walk the kids to school, have a dance competition in the lounge on a rainy day or take the stairs instead of the lift.

EXERCISE ONLINE THE internet is often given a bad rap for gluing us to our screens, however it can also be an invaluable tool when getting healthy without spending money.

Not only will you find lots of exercise, workout and yoga/ stretching videos, there are plenty of tips on family fitness, healthy recipes and groups where you can find advice, help and support when the going gets tough.

Just make sure you choose the most highly rated videos, or videos form a trusted source like a health provider or qualified coach, to make sure you're learning from the best. The NHS website has a page of free gym workouts, five and ten-minute workouts and even a 12-week fitness programme, all at no cost.

NOTICE IT A GOOD place to find free classes and groups is your local park or community notice board. There are often lots of family sessions, community led classes or groups that meet up and exercise together.

Some classes may make a charge of a few pounds, but this will be much cheaper than a PS575-a-month gym membership like Prince Harry's! If you can't find a group doing an activity you enjoy - why not start one? BE WEB WISE CHECK out parkrun.org.uk, tennisforfree.com or other national sports websites. Sporting bodies often offer free sessions for adults and children to try out a new activity. …

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