BROMSGROVE Sport and Leisure Centre on School Drive is looking forward to the return of group exercise classes.

The centre, run by Everyone Active and in partnership with Bromsgrove District Council, has been called “a huge boost” for the mental health of the community.

As group exercise has been given the green light by the government from May 17, members will be able to partake in classes such as Bodypump, aqua aerobics and group cycling.

Lloyd Barraclough, contract manager at Everyone Active, said: “We are delighted to be able to safely resume group exercise classes in our centre.

“Aside from the obvious physical benefits, this will be a huge boost for mental health and wellbeing in Bromsgrove and comes at an apt time following the start of Mental Health Awareness Week.

“Many of our customers thrive on the social element of exercise, not just for motivational reasons but also because they enjoy seeing friendly faces in a familiar environment.

“With social contact having been limited over the past year, the ability to mix safely with other members of the community will be appreciated by many.

“The importance of mental wellbeing is proving increasingly resonant with the public and customers can reintroduce group exercise to their fitness regime in the knowledge they are addressing the needs of body and mind.”

Prior to the reopening of gyms, members were able to use Everyone Active’s package of online workouts and livestreamed classes across its social media pages.

Bromsgrove District Council’s Head of Leisure, Ruth Bamford, said: “Exercise alone sees improved well-being both physically and mentally but now we can do so socially, and of course safely, the benefits will be huge”.

“I hope everyone enjoys these new measures but please respect the guidelines which are there for your safety and for our staff and so we can continue to offer this service.”

Research commissioned by ukactive showed that 58% of people had managed their mental health and wellbeing during lockdown through being active, while 63% said that taking part in sport and physical activity with others could help with feelings of loneliness.