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Welcome Gym Southend Promotes Health and Happiness In The Community

Welcome Gym Southend Promotes Health and Happiness In The Community

The Welcome Gym in Southend’s Victoria Shopping Centre, like the other five clubs in this chain, is part of the Fitness Trust. This is a charitable trust, whose aim is to provide professional, high quality but inexpensive exercise facilities to promote better health choices to a broad demographic in the community that it serves.

In recent years, with increasing demands on the NHS, the government has launched a number of initiatives that emphasise the importance of prioritising preventative measures to improve the health of the population, especially healthy eating and exercise. In tandem with this theme, the Fitness Trust strives to tackle public health issues such as obesity, wellbeing in old age and mental resilience, by reaching out to those people who may perceive exercise as unappealing or unaffordable. The emphasis is on making its gyms inexpensive, friendly, non-intimidating and welcoming – hence the name “Welcome Gym”. Furthermore, as a charitable trust or not-for-profit organisation, Welcome Gym ploughs 100% of its profits back into its gyms, improving and maintaining its facilities and investing in staff training and advancement.


Southend’s Welcome Gym exemplifies this model. As well as providing a range of specialist fitness equipment, the gym offers a comprehensive programme of free fitness classes to suit all ages and abilities, including mother and baby sessions, ladies only classes and activities aimed at the over 50s. Help and advice from the fitness team is always available, and all members are entitled to a free gym introduction and a free half- hour personal training taster session to help them make the most of their time in the gym.

Welcome Gym Southend is also actively involved in promoting important public health messages – for example with information stands in the Victoria Centre, blood pressure testing in a recent Heart2Heart Campaign, and earlier this year, with the offer of a period of free personal training for deserving applicants with a specific physical or mental challenge or goal – called the Revitalise programme. Their experiences were shared on social media, giving other gym members a real insight into the challenges and transformative benefits of one-to-one personal training.

So popular and successful was the Revitalise campaign that Welcome Gym is planning to extend the offer to some more of those members, whose original applications to join the scheme were unsuccessful first time round. These selected members, who must be prepared to share their progress on Facebook and Instagram and in blogs and vlogs, will be offered 12 sessions of personal training over July and August absolutely free of charge.


Welcome Gym Southend’s General Manager, Kirsty Michael, is enthusiastic about the positive contribution that Welcome Gym is making to the health and wellbeing of the town’s population. She says, “Chatting to our club members each day, I’m aware of the amazingly positive benefit that regular exercise has on people’s physical and mental wellbeing and overall happiness. Joining our gym is a real win-win situation - good for everyone involved. Our fees are affordable, our facilities are great and we feel we have a real stake in promoting good health in the community. Our ethical credentials make Welcome Gym Southend a very rewarding and positive place to work too!”

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