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Guidance to help leisure facilities appeal more to women

Guidance to help leisure facilities appeal more to women back to News

New guidance aims to help gym and leisure facilities become more welcoming to women and girls in a bid to narrow the gender activity gap.

The Sport England latest Active Lives report shows men continue to be more regularly active than women, which is why the award-winning This Girl Can campaign partnered with ukactive to produce the guidance.

Developed over nine months and using extensive research and insight, it includes practical guidance and checklists to help improve the engagement, experience and confidence of women and girls using gyms and other leisure facilities.

A smiling woman exercises on an elliptical trainer in a gym.

Entitled ‘How to improve your services for women and girls: as told by the 51%’ the guide has been welcomed by leading fitness operators and our chief executive, Tim Hollingsworth, highlighted the importance of public facilities in enabling women to be active.

“It’s crucial that we focus on getting more women regularly active,” he said.

“Leisure environments are important for sustaining women’s activity levels; prior to the pandemic, 21% of women were regular participants in fitness classes, while the number of women taking part in weights sessions was also seeing an increase.

“By listening to women and working with fitness providers to develop the guidance, we’re confident that it will help even more facilities to engage with women.  

“The development of this guidance has been a great example of collaboration on behalf of the sport and physical activity sector and will support organisations to appeal to more women.” 

Earlier this year, in partnership with This Girl Can, ukactive commissioned Savanta ComRes to conduct a survey of more than 1,000 women and girls.

The results from this, as well as those from a series of focus groups carried out by the ukactive Research Institute, informed the development of the guidance.

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Posted on 22nd November 2021