Insight from one of Sport England’s most prominent projects, This Girl Can, found that 75% of women wanted to be more physically active but had barriers that stopped them. The largest unifying barrier for women was the fear of judgement. EMD UK, the national governing body of group exercise, has been working in partnership with Sport England to reduce this barrier with our new This Girl Can Classes.
This Girl Can Classes, operated by EMD UK and funded by Sport England and The National Lottery, are specifically designed to create a behaviour change for less active women or those returning to exercise after a break. These local classes will be a steppingstone into regular classes and will build fitness, confidence, and ability.
What impact is This Girl Can Classes having on activating the nation?
EMD UK has trained over 200 This Girl Can Classes instructors and partnered with 26 Leisure Operators, with over 100 classes currently running in England.
Our recent research* found that 57% of participants were returning to, or trying out group exercise for the first time. Interestingly, 40% of respondents had not used the centre or instructor before and 30% of participants had attended group exercise classes before but not in the six months previous.
Most participants (72%) reported still being apprehensive before their class. Self-consciousness, personal levels of fitness, and uncertainty about their ability to keep up with the class or do the exercises were the key concerns. However, we are also thrilled to know that the overwhelming majority (98%) of respondents were satisfied with the classes.
*This Girl Can Classes: Evaluation of National Rollout