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Five ways we make sports accessible for all

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By designing a building with accessibility in mind, it ensures inclusion and can help everyone to access all the benefits of sport, fitness and wellness – as it should be.

Whether it’s beginners, fitness fanatics or even athletes, here are five ways that barriers can be broken down to create a disabled-friendly gym that makes sport accessible to all.

Accessible by design

Everything starts with design and layout. That’s why the core features of the Sports & Wellness Hub were created with accessibility in mind, from the entrance through to our squash court, which includes a wide door entrance for wheelchair users.

Ease of access for individuals with physical impairments is very important when it comes to providing a welcoming environment everyone can interact with. Step-free access to all areas and disabled lifts create an inclusive facility for both spectators and participants alike.

Wheelchair users can also access wheelchair bays in all spectator areas from courts through to sports halls, meaning everyone can easily watch any sport and be a part of the audience atmosphere.

Features, such as a disabled shower in our team changing area, may seem small, yet they can make a world of difference when it comes to making everyone feel welcome by giving all sport participants the opportunity to stay with their team.

Room to change

Adequate changing space in sport can make everyone can feel comfortable.

Changing Places’ accessible toilets include an adjustable changing bench, a ceiling track hoist and privacy screen so that users have all the helpful equipment they need at their disposal.

These facilities also offer those with disabilities, as well as their carers, the space and dignity to easily change before and after sport or exercise.

Inclusive classes and instructors

From tennis and basketball through to swimming and dance, accessible classes mean accessible sports, whether competitive or social natured. It’s important that trainers and instructors have received appropriate training and can provide guidance or help with choosing the best exercises or adaptations to suit different needs and capabilities.

Adaptable gym

Exercise is a great source of fitness and wellness that every individual should be able to benefit from and enjoy. A wide range of gym equipment can make workouts fully adaptable for users that require greater accessibility.

This can include benches with adjustable backs and seats, barbells and plates with adjustable J-hooks and central cable machines with no fixed seat attachments for maximum flexibility.

Universal swimming

Swimming pools can be difficult for some to access without sufficient measures in place. A walk-in swimming pool allows ease of access and a Pool Pod Lift enables all users to enter the easily enter the water more independently, using a bespoke wheelchair or standing platform.

A moveable pool floor also allows for shallower depths so less experienced swimmers can enjoy the facilities without stepping outside of their comfort zone.

A traditional swimming pool hoist increases water accessibility for those that may need some help with entry, while wheelchair users can also use a bespoke wheelchair designed specifically for wet leisure activities if they require further support.

David Morris

David Morris Content Contributor, Warwick Sport

David is an avid runner and writes about different aspects of fitness, health and wellbeing. He enjoys running, fitness classes and outdoor activities with his daughters.


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