'Better' leisure centres in Yorkshire collaborate with Diabetes UK

Centres in York, Yearsley, Burnholme, Acomb and Bradford join the initiative.

This week, ‘Better’ leisure centres have announced plans to work alongside leading health charity Diabetes UK, to support two of the charity’s fundraising initiatives - Swim22 and the One Million Step challenge.

Both challenges are designed to encourage people to use exercise to boost their mental and physical health, while also raising funds for the vital research made possible by Diabetes UK.

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Better leisure centres – operated by charitable social enterprise GLL - will promote the challenges to its 800,000 members, offering participants discounted membership, free training events and tips and advice, helping them to prepare safely and effectively.

Swim the length of the English Channel to combat diabetesSwim the length of the English Channel to combat diabetes
Swim the length of the English Channel to combat diabetes

Swim22 invites participants to swim the width of the English Channel over a period of 12 weeks, while the One Million Step Challenge asks fundraisers to walk an average of 10,800 steps each day, over a three-month period.

Figures from Diabetes UK show that 4.3million people are now living with a diagnosis of diabetes in the UK while more than 2.4 million people are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

The charity estimates there are an additional 850,000 people living with diabetes who are yet to be diagnosed, bringing the overall UK-wide figure beyond five million.

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Without the right care and support, people with all types of diabetes can be at risk of developing serious complications such as amputations, strokes and heart attacks.

Commenting on the new relationship Joseph Rham, Customer Experience Director at GLL said: “Diabetes is one of the fastest growing chronic conditions in the world. We also know that weight loss can in many cases, help to lower blood sugar levels and even put type 2 diabetes into remission.

“Not only do we support the important research work that Diabetes UK undertakes, we also want to encourage those living in our local communities to use our facilities to help improve their health and wellbeing. Taking part in the Swim22 and One Million Step challenges are a fantastic way to stay motivated, raise funds for a worthy cause and support health and weight loss goals.”

James Beeby, Director of Engagement and Fundraising at Diabetes UK, added: “Whether you want to get more active, improve your overall health or challenge yourself to achieve a fitness goal, our virtual events are a great way to do so. We’re delighted to be working with GLL this year to enhance our supporters experience and to help us reach new audiences who could benefit from our challenges.

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“Across the UK, Better leisure centres support their members to improve their physical and mental health and it is this shared aim that makes this collaboration so fitting.”

All funds raised from the challenges will go towards Diabetes UK’s work, funding life-saving research and helping people living with diabetes to get the care and support they need.

For more information about diabetes and the charity’s work, visit www.diabetes.org.uk