Ryan Collins explains “The gym at Westbank Community Health and Care in Exminster can because the membership our users pay is reinvested into other services the charity provides for the local community. How brilliant is that?

It’s one of the reasons I love working as a fitness instructor for Westbank, along with my colleagues Katie and Emily. I’ve worked in several commercial gyms before - they were bigger, but they just can’t compare in terms of job satisfaction. That’s because here at Westbank we have the equipment and expertise to support people with mobility issues and those recovering from illness or an operation, as well as regular gym goers.

Unlike in other gyms I’ve worked in, many of our regular users come here to maintain their independence and mobility rather than ‘to set a new personal best’, although obviously there are people for whom that’s an important goal too! 

Recently, for example, a client called Dave started working out here as part of his recuperation after an operation. Health practitioners had advised him to use a Zimmer Frame but he was having none of it! For him, working out at Westbank is about regaining his mobility and independence, and I’m happy to say that with a combination of our specialist equipment and support and his determination he is making steady progress.

 As well as the usual treadmills, cycling machines, weights and strength and conditioning equipment, we offer a wide choice of fitness classes - everything from Spinning to Bootcamp. The regular classes run by the Fitness Team are complemented by other programmes run by colleagues, for example, our Falls Prevention courses and a range of weekly Health Walks for those who prefer to exercise outside. If you like exercise that keeps you on your toes, we also have activities like Table Tennis and Ballroom Dancing. Together, these fitness activities offer something for everyone. So there’s no excuse, not to get moving! 

Our gym also offers a fantastic view, so you can take in a countryside vista while you clock up your steps. With the added bonus of free parking! 

Our biggest challenge is getting the word out that Westbank has this fantastic facility, and a team who can’t wait to help you achieve your health and well-being goals - whatever they may be. We’d love to have the opportunity to show you around.”

 If you would like further information about activities at Westbank, or to support or donate to any of the services we provide, go to www.westbank.org.uk