The idea of a “Green Gym” came from Dr William Bird over 20 years ago when he was a partner at the Sonning Common Health Centre. Since then, Green Gym organisations have been set up across the country under the umbrella of The Conservation Volunteer Group and to date, there are over 100 Green Gyms in England. Green Gyms provide opportunities for people to connect with nature and their community by helping to maintain high quality and sustainable green spaces.
The aim of the Green Gym is to encourage people to get more exercise while undertaking important conservation work in the local area. The health benefits from exercising include improvement in muscular and cardio fitness, reduction in the risk of high blood pressure, maintenance of a healthy weight and reduction in anxiety. Many people find going to a conventional gym monotonous, expensive or simply lonely and boring. The Green Gym is a constructive alternative and also an opportunity to make new friends. There is always time to chat over tea and cake at our sessions!
The Sonning Common Green Gym meets twice a week at a variety of different sites around the Sonning Common area. Sites include nature reserves, woodlands, orchards, commons, playing fields and Sites of Special Scientific Interest. The work is varied and includes the removal of invasive plant species, trimming hedges, clearing footpaths, planting new trees and maintaining fencing.
You don’t need to worry that you may not be strong enough or that you don’t have the necessary skills, there will always be someone to help you. You can work at you own pace and there are a variety of tasks to suit all ages and abilities.
Why don’t you give it a go? Just go to the ‘contact us’ section of the website and we will send you details of our planned sessions.
We look forward to seeing you.
Peter Keel, Chairman