EMD UK, the national governing body for group exercise, has partnered with Sport England’s award-winning ‘This Girl Can’ campaign.
The partnership will see EMD – previously known as The Exercise, Move and Dance Partnership – create a new programme aimed at breaking down the emotional barriers women face when considering group exercise by ensuring it is friendly, low intensity and non-judgemental.
The project seeks to instil a sustainable change in behaviour among less active women, to improve their health and happiness, and will be marketed in a way that appeals to less active, less confident women.
Emma Forward, Chief Operating Officer for EMD UK, said: “We are delighted to be working with This Girl Can on a new class concept.
“First impressions are everything; with 78% of group exercise classes taking place in private gyms or leisure centres, it’s incredibly important that centres offer the best possible experience, both inside and outside the exercise class.
“We’re looking forward to working on the project and encouraging even more women into regular physical activity.”
EMD UK and This Girl Can are currently creating the new class concept, with an aim to launch the pilot programme in January 2020.
Frances Drury, Activation Manager for This Girl Can, added: “Group exercise was an obvious area for Sport England to focus on. We identified, through focus groups, that a large number of less active women had often had a poor experience at a fitness class, despite having the will to go, which had put them off returning.
“This Girl Can therefore felt there was something we could do in this space, in partnership with EMD UK, who had already identified this gap in the market and run some pilot fitness classes for less active women as a result. We’re looking forward to bringing the inclusive and non-judgemental attitude of This Girl Can to group exercise in order to encourage more women to give it a go.”