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University of Leeds Boat Club Win at the Leeds Sport Awards!

boat club celebrating

The University of Leeds Boat Club have won Student Sport Team of the Year at this year’s Leeds Sport Awards.

The awards were held last night at the first direct arena in Leeds, in celebration of all the fantastic sportsmen and women across the city and their contributions to sport.

The University of Leeds Boat Club has an outstanding record of delivering performance and participation. Over the past few years the results of crews at the club have significantly improved, going from two semi-finals at BUCS regatta in 2018 to nine last year.

Its elite athlete support helped home grown talent like Matt Brigham break onto the international stage in 2019. The club does significant work in the local community with coaching for clubs and schools and social rowing groups for casual participants.

Club Captain, Ella, told us what it meant to the club to win at the awards;

We feel honoured to be able to accept this award and grateful to be part of a club deserving of it. we are so proud of how inclusive we are. There is somewhere for everyone in this club.

Also highly commended at the awards were rowing scholar Matt Brigham and the University of Leeds Women’s Rugby Union Team. Matt has gone from strength to strength over the past couple of years, and in 2019 beat two-time Olympic champion, Mahe Drysdale, at Henley, as well as winning gold for England at the Home International Regatta.

Uni of Leeds Women's Rugby at Sport Awards

The Women’s Rugby Union team made history last year as they played alongside the men at Emerald Headingley Stadium in the annual Varsity competition. They are also active members of the local community, taking part in numerous projects and working with local charities for worthwhile causes.

Club captain, Ashley Ross, said;

It was an honour to have our growth and impact as a club recognised at the Leeds Sports awards. We only hope our ethos of inclusivity will continue to attract more females to the game of rugby. It was amazing to see the rise of equality in female sport reflected at the awards with so many amazing achievements by female athletes being highlighted. Events like this will further inspire LUUWRUFC to continue to break down barriers to sport participation and provide an outlet for a diverse group of women to come together, play rugby and most importantly, have fun.

Well done to both our winners and nominees from all of us here at Leeds Sport.

Why Would You Volunteer?

Do good stuff volunteering graphic

Hi! My name is Nicola and I am the Sports Development Assistant (volunteer) here at Leeds Sport! Whilst I am new to the role and the Leeds Sport team, I am not new to volunteering. Over the last five years I have dedicated over 800 hours to volunteering within the Watersports Sector.

My volunteering journey started off in 2015 when I was sailing at my local club in Manchester. I decided that I wanted to get more involved with the running of the club and was given a few jobs to do each week to help out, including helping to rig the boats and launch them. I really enjoyed this and decided I wanted to become an instructor, but I couldn’t pay for the course fees and so I made an agreement with the centre that if they pay for the course, I will continue to volunteer my time as an Instructor. My experiences grew from there and in 2016 I was awarded the Manchester Sport Young Volunteer of the Year for my dedication to volunteering within the sport sector, alongside my studies.

Manchester Sport Award 2016

I continued to volunteer for the club and moved my way up the committee from Social & Events Officer, to Vice Chairperson and now to Commodore. In 2018 I won the inaugural Panerai Challenger Trophy for my ability to use sailing and windsurfing to overcome difficulties in my life, which led to a £5000 grant to go towards my training and equipment and £10,000 for my club. Now I am a Senior Instructor in Sailing, Windsurfing and Powerboating.

Award Winner

Although winning awards and improving my CV have both been great outcomes from my volunteer work, it’s not really what drives me to keep doing it. The connections that you build with people and seeing that you are making a change in someone’s life through what you’re doing are enough to keep me motivated and enjoying what I do.

Volunteering isn’t always a walk in the park, like with any ‘job’ it can come with its own challenges. For me it was the competition for time between my studies and volunteering and finding a balance, but I found doing volunteering little and often meant that I could manage my studies, whilst still having fun from the volunteering and sports. You just have to find a balance that works for you.

Sailing

I always recommend that everyone gives volunteering a go because the skills that you develop from it and the opportunities presented are invaluable and not to mention, you’ll have a great time doing it too!

I hope to bring my past experiences to the role and help to improve offerings around campus!

If you are interested in the Sports Development Assistant post or any other of our volunteering roles, find out more on our website

Free taster sessions for females

TGC climbing 1100x400

This Girl Can – a National Lottery-funded campaign encouraging women to get involved with sport and physical activity – has relaunched with an inspiring advert.

To raise awareness of This Girl Can and to celebrate International Women’s Day, Sport and Physical Activity are hosting a series of FREE taster sessions on Monday 9th March for all University of Leeds students and staff who identify as female.

No experience is needed for any of the taster sessions; all abilities are welcome.

All equipment will be provided so please just turn up in comfortable clothing and footwear and bring a bottle of water with you.

For students:
  • Netball and badminton- 3-4pm @ Sports Hall 1A and 1B, The Edge. For more information and to register your place, please contact Rachel Harrison. 
  • Indoor Climbing- 12-2pm @ the climbing wall, The Edge. These 30 minute tasters are for anyone who would like to try climbing for the first time or to learn how they can take their climbing to the next level. To register your place, please contact Edge Reception. If you would like to discuss anything beforehand, please contact Helen Pepper, Climbing Coordinator.
  • Women’s Wellbeing Walk- meet on the precint outside the main entrance of LUU at 11:55 for the walk to begin at 12:00. The route will incorporate Woodhouse Moor and Woodhouse Ridge and will be approximately 45 minutes in length, weather dependent.
For staff:
  • Netball and badminton- 2-3pm @ Sports Hall 1A and 1B, The Edge. For more information and to register your place, please contact Rachel Harrison. 
  • Indoor Climbing- 12-2pm @ the climbing wall, The Edge. These 30 minute tasters are for anyone who would like to try climbing for the first time or to learn how they can take their climbing to the next level. To register your place, please contact Edge Reception. If you would like to discuss anything beforehand, please contact Helen Pepper, Climbing Coordinator.
  • Women’s Wellbeing Walk- meet on the precint outside the main entrance of LUU at 11:55 for the walk to begin at 12:00. The route will incorporate Woodhouse Moor and Woodhouse Ridge and will be approximately 45 minutes in length, weather dependent.

This Girl Can… Can you?

Become a Media Assistant for Leeds Sport!

Do good stuff volunteering graphic

The role of a Leeds Sport Media Assistant is exciting, varied and flexible. It opens the door to opportunities which are shaped towards your interests and skills you wish to develop. In the role, activities stretch from social media coverage of Varsity to writing blog posts about sport initiatives in Leeds such as Goodgym. It’s a really rewarding scheme and a great way to develop employability skills such as leadership and communication.

ELLIE: Social Media Assistant 

I applied to the Media Assistant role because I intend to go into a marketing career and wanted more experience. My previous marketing roles have been in social media marketing and market research. I wanted to build on this experience in a new industry context. I’m interested in going into a sports marketing career but did not have any experience in this industry. Therefore I thought the role would be a great way to develop my understanding of sports marketing.

I really appreciate the flexibility of the scheme, both in terms of the role and time commitment. I have been able to mould the role to suit areas that I would like to get more experience in. For example, this semester I will be learning more about the Sports Colours Awards, which is a big sports event on campus. Last semester I focused more on social media for a variety of different events such as the Parkrun. This flexibility has allowed me to gain experience in areas that I wanted to develop, whilst also developing other crucial employability skills such as communication. The scheme requires around two hours of work a week during term time. On the whole, it is extremely flexible around your degree.

I’ve really benefited from the scheme so far, not only have I developed my skill set which I have found really useful when applying for graduate roles, but I have really enjoyed being involved in such a wide variety of sports opportunities throughout campus.

 

MADDY: News and Blog assistant

Maddy Sherratt

 As an aspiring journalist, the role of the media assistant really appealed to me. I wanted to diversify my time between academic writing, keeping active and writing news and blogs. In the past, I’ve worked with financial news organisations and write regular blogs on issues of current affairs and human interest.  However, I wanted to develop knowledge and skills in a new field whilst also gaining reputable writing skills for my year-in-industry and future graduate role. The voluntary nature of the role is incredibly rewarding as both others and yourself benefit from the work you produce. I’ve had the opportunity to interview Olympic hopefuls and inspiring coaches. It’s fascinating to hear and convey stories from the universities key role models in sport.

Adapting my writing style from academic essays to journalistic articles has been a real learning curb for me. I’ve really benefited from learning about digital platforms such as WordPress. I’m also excited to create a video with Ellie for the Leeds Sport Volunteering campaign this month. As well as this, I’ve gained a valuable set of skills ranging from communication, leadership, teamwork and initiative. The role is very flexible around your degree which avoids lots of stress when it comes to managing essay deadlines. This role will also give you direct access to societies and you can assist them with media enquiries.

I would highly recommend this role as it has allowed me to be recognised by other journalists and business professionals on platforms such as LinkedIn and it also provides you with free access to the Edge gym – one of the many advantages of a volunteering role.  

 

Check out all of our volunteering opportunities for the 2020/21 academic year, including the Leeds Sport Media Assistant, here.

Complete our survey and you could win £50!

Your Gym Your Move

We want to be the best, and we can only do that with your feedback on how we can improve! If you have five minutes to spare, please complete our customer satisfaction survey giving feedback on your experience with Sport and Physical Activity, it would be greatly appreciated!

As a thank you, we will enter everyone who completes before February 29 into a prize draw to win prizes worth a total of £250! There will be 3 prizes of £50 and 4 prizes of £25.

This Girl Can at Leeds

Woman swimming

This Girl Can have just relaunched their campaign with another inspiring advert to motivate more women to take part in sport and physical activity. Women have long faced social pressures, judgement, and fear of talking about issues which society has deemed ‘taboo’ when it comes to their bodies and exercising. This campaign aims to show the unfiltered reality of exercise, whilst celebrating women of all shapes and sizes, abilities and backgrounds, to empower them to become more active and confident. The new campaign also focuses on periods, menopause, pregnancy and motherhood, and how women use exercise as a way to combat symptoms or allow time for themselves.

Since This Girl Can launched in 2015, it has inspired 3.5 million women to get active but there is still a long way to go, with 40% of women aged 16 and over insufficiently active, compared with 35% of men (Active Lives, 2018). Sport and Physical Activity’s new strategy: Do What Moves You also aims to celebrate and encourage anybody of any ability to engage in sport and physical activity, and to get moving in whatever way works for them.

This Girl Can women on matt

There are a number of opportunities available for women to get more active across the campus including:

  • Netball and badminton taster sessions for students and staff @ The Edge on Monday 9 March at 2-3pm. Contact Rachel Harrison for further information and to sign up
  • Female only swim sessions @ The Edge pool (Tuesdays 10:45-11:45 and Fridays 21:15-22:15)
  • Women only strength training courses – the perfect opportunity for beginners or intermediates to learn new techniques to improve their workouts
  • Join the Couch to 5K programme to get more active in a safe, social and friendly environment. The deadline to sign-up is Tuesday 4th February
  • From 27 January there will be a range of beginner’s group exercise classes added to The Edge class timetable including Yoga, Barre Pilates, Body Pump, Zumba and Kaiser/Spin. There are also a range of dance based group exercise classes, which are a great way to have fun whilst exercising including Zumba, Clubbercise, Dance Fitness and Body Jam
  • Join the 5-a-side football social league by registering a team to take part. We will soon be sharing details about our new netball social league for staff. Contact R.J.Harrison1@leeds.ac.uk for more information
  • The LOGIK centre will soon be releasing details of their Winter/Spring 2020 programme, which will include antenatal exercise classes as well as the introduction of yoga for menopause. You can check for updates here.

Do you have an inspirational story that you would like to share to help motivate and inspire other women to get active? Whatever it is that keeps you moving – whether it’s playing a team sport, yoga, dog walking, pram pushing, weight lifting, gardening or swimming – we’d love to hear! Contact Beth Fadden, Physical Activity and Wellbeing Manager at b.fadden@leeds.ac.uk

 

 

 

Balancing Life Survey Results 2019

Balancing Life Imagery

In 2019 we ran our annual survey, Balancing Life, to find out about activity and well-being levels amongst the University population. We use this information to help shape our future plans and initiatives for Sport & Physical activity, so thank you to everyone who took the time to fill it out.

This year’s results coincide with the launch of the University’s new strategic plan for Sport & Physical Activity; Do What Moves You, with our vision to be the best University to be active. The results from Balancing Life specifically help to inform and guide us in regards to one of the strategy’s key aims; to help staff and students improve their health & well-being.

The results were positive, and have given us fantastic new insights to work with and shall help to continually evolve the service we offer;

2019 Key Results:

  • 2172 total survey response, a 48% increase on 2018
  • 75% of campus active, an increase of 1% since 2018
  • 46% of you are doing regular exercise, an increase of 7% since 2018
  • Our staff are 10% more active than the general working population
  • We scored 22 on the SWEMWBS* meaning our mental wellbeing scores are behind the national average
  • 25% of the campus population are fairly active or inactive, down 1% from 26% in 2018
  • Our students are 1% less active than the Higher Education average

To read more about the results from the survey, take a look at our Balancing Life page on our website. The SPA Physical Activity and Well-being Team will be delivering a series of workshops over the month with different faculties and services to discuss the Balancing Life results in more detail. If you would like to find out more about these, please get in touch with our Physical Activity and Well-being Manager, Bethany Fadden.

If you are wanting to make a change to your lifestyle and be more active, we have many options to help you get started. During term time, The Edge offers over 220 exercise classes per week, from quick 30 minute HIIT classes that you can fit into the working day, to more gentle yoga and pilates. If that doesn’t excite you, why not join one of our social leagues and play with your mates? Or, if you are looking to get into running, why not join one of Get Out, Get Active’s wellbeing runs or sign up for the latest entry-level Couch to 5K programme, which is open to all staff and students?

 

Run the Loop at the Brownlee Centre

Brownlee Run the Loop

Entries are now open for the “Run the Loop at the Brownlee Centre” event

Come join us on the 24th May 2020 for our annual multi-distance running event at our fantastic Brownlee Centre at the University of Leeds.

Our unique event takes place on our closed-road 1-mile cycle circuit and offers runners a range of different events to enter – from a 5km to half marathon. You can race and run where current and next generation Olympic champions train!

The closed-road circuit provides a unique opportunity for participants looking to take part in their first road running race and for seasoned PB hunters.

All finishers will receive a goody bag and a celebratory prize. There will be male and female prizes for all distances, and hopefully a few PB’s to be found along the way!

Cycle circut with brownlee centre building behind

The event will support an international sports development programme, Gryphons Abroad – supported by the Bambisanani Partnership. A contribution from your race fee will go to the project which changes the lives of young people in South Africa, in particular through the purchase of bikes, bike equipment and educational materials.

You can find out more about this amazing programme here.

Date: Sunday 24th May 2020

Time: 10.30am start (First event off)

Venue: The Brownlee Centre – Bodington Playing Fields

Information and entry fees

Day/TimeDistanceCostBook
Sunday 24 May, 10:30Half Marathon (13.1 miles). Age 17+£24.00 affiliated, £26.00 non-affiliatedEnter here
Sunday 24th May, 10.305 km. Age: 11+£10.00 affiliated, £12.00 non-affiliatedEnter here
Sunday 24th May, 10.30 10 km. Age: 15+£17.00 affiliated, £19.00 non-affiliatedEnter here

5 ways to get started with your health and fitness

Personal Better: 5 ways post

Let 2020 be the year that you achieve your goal!

If you don’t know where to begin or just want to ease yourself back in after the Christmas break we’ve compiled a list of tips to help you.

1. Begin with low impact exercises and beginners’ workouts

Swimming is the perfect activity when you’re starting out as there is no impact and you can set your own pace. If you want to use the gym you can build your knowledge and confidence with workout videos. Check out our YouTube playlist for workout inspiration. We would recommend the Beginners Workout demonstrated by Personal Trainer Ali. It is a strength workout that covers all muscle groups that you can adapt to what you want to focus on. If you’re new to the Technogym equipment don’t hesitate to ask one of our team on setting up and using the machines safely.

2. Balance is best

After a potentially indulgent December, it can be easy to believe that by being strict and restrictive you’re being healthy. If that is maintainable and works for you, great! However, for most of us, we struggle to maintain the discipline required so this year strike a balance. If you know you’re going out for a meal with friends in the evening just have a lighter lunch that day. If you want to cut back, cut back on snacking between meals. But the one thing you can do is diversify the food you eat. Dr Chatterjee recommends keeping an alphabet chart to help you eat a wide range of foods and if you want to try out some new recipes, we have some great ones, including a Roasted Vegetable Stew.

3. Discover what is going to get you motivated and moving

Exercise and activity shouldn’t feel like a hardship. You just need to find what you really enjoy doing. Over January just try different activities you think you might like. At The Edge you can try climbing, squash, Edge courses, including how to play racquetball, and exercise classes. Classes are perfect for beginners as the instructor will check your form, you’re motivated by everyone around you, and we have over 220 different ones, so you’ll definitely be able to discover what you enjoy doing. Download our class guide (PDF) to get started.

4. Join or exercise with a friend

Another reason why classes are fantastic is that each class is like a small community. November’s Members of the Month were nominated because of the support and enthusiasm they bring to each class. Also, starting your health and fitness journey with a likeminded friend is great for motivation and discipline.

5. Have an achievable goal you can work towards

Remember that this is a journey with a purpose. This purpose can range from ‘I want to be exercising three times a week’ to ‘By the end of 2020 I will be lifting 50kgs’. Whatever it is, what is crucial is that you give yourself a date to accomplish it by and that you make sure it is realistically achievable. Also try and track your progress. We have INBODY Technology that can do a full-body analysis that analyses more than just weight. If you don’t know where to start, why not book a PT consultation? Our experts can support you with planning and achieving your goal.


Sign up to our fantastic Alumni offer!

Congradulations, 15% off alumni membership

If you are graduating this December and staying in Leeds, why not take this opportunity to save money on an Alumni membership?

Sign up within 12 months of your graduation date and you can save 15% on monthly and annual memberships.

This means you can get an Edge membership from as little as £30.41 per month or £310.25 per year (£25.85 per month). For more information on our Alumni membership prices check out our Alumni memberships page on the website.

Not only will you get a great deal on an Edge membership but if you are an existing Edge member, there will be no further joining fees for you to pay!

To sign up or find out more, contact the membership team on edgemembership@leeds.ac.uk or visit reception.