The benefits of green gyms

Leveraging the “Green Gym” concept for your clients, your business, and yourself

minute read
The Green Gym concept champions mental and physical well being - but we think it can improve your businesses health too.

Leveraging the “Green Gym” concept for your clients, your business, and yourself

Have you got a Green Gym in your town? Combining physical activity, mental wellbeing, and community, the 100+ Green Gyms across England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland offer an exciting way to get local people active. We think it’s a great opportunity to explore outdoor wellness for your clients (and maybe for yourself?)

What are Green Gyms in the UK?

The UK’s Green Gyms are organised and promoted by The Conservation Volunteers, The concept offers ‘purposeful physical activity outdoors’ through activities like planting trees and managing woodland, growing food, and creating wildflower meadows.

What’s the idea behind Green Gyms?

As a fitness professional, you’re well aware of the importance of building consistent, regular activity into people’s lifestyles. And you know about the research around outdoor activity which has an outcome – rather than exercise – as its goal.

That’s part of what Green Gyms does.  The aim of the movement is to help people achieve all-round, holistic wellness. Yes, it offers physical activity to improve mobility, strength, and stamina. But it also offers a valuable opportunity to be outdoors, doing something for the community, with like-minded people.

And it works. The University of Westminster carried out a study into changes in cortisol levels in Green Gym participants. The study found that Gym participants reported higher levels of well-being and lower levels of stress, anxiety and depression compared to the control group. Read the study here.

How to incorporate the Green Gyms ethos in your business

The Green Gym concept is a great example of how people can increase their activity in structured, group-based conservation work in the local area. We think there are three ways you could leverage the Green Gym idea for your business.

For your clients

Facilitating outdoor, feel-good activity could be a great way to keep your clients moving whilst connecting them with the local community. This might be particularly valuable if you work with older or less performance-focused populations.

You could contact the conservation volunteers to arrange for a group of your clients to have a Green Gym day out, or series of sessions. Or develop your own smaller version of a Green Gym by asking clients who have large gardens or an allotment.

The aim is to create a fun, active social outlet that adds something extra to your main client offering of physical fitness and health.

Summer is here and that presents a fresh set of opportunities for you business. Learn about getting the most juice for your squeeze in Leverage Summer To Boost Your Profits (But Watch Out For These Pitfalls).

For your facility

Could you great a Green Gym-inspired class, workshop, or block of sessions? Get creative with ways to make this work for your environment, even if you don’t live in a rural or coastal area. For example:

  • Litter picking or beach clean (not glam, but can be great fun if you include a coffee or brunch stop)
  • Helping at community gardens
  • Toad-patrolling (yes, this is a real thing in some areas!)
  • Volunteering to help older people with their garden or allotment

For you as a business owner

Finally, think about getting involved in the Green Gym concept for yourself. Running a fitness business can be stressful and draining. It’s easy to fall into the trap of working long hours and neglecting time outdoors in nature.

Your local Green Gym – or any of the ideas we listed above - could be a great way to stay active outside of your own training. It’s a great way to practice what you preach, stay connected with the local community, and even to promote your business whilst you’re there!

Summer is a wonderful time for taking clients outside, but you need some R&R too. If that seems like a distant dream then you need to read out guide Stop Your Fitness Business Ruling Your Life.

Promote all client events in the Striive client app

Striive’s client-facing app makes it easy for your clients to view, book onto, and manage their sessions. Even if that’s unusual or one-off sessions like a local litter pick or gardening meet up.

Whatever you want to promote, just pop it into Striive and it’ll show up in the client’s version of the app. Easy for you, easy for them. Start your free trial to see what we mean.

Not ready yet? Discover how Striive can help you here.

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