'Take up outdoor exercise in green spaces' plea to residents

The Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay, councillors and key community stakeholders for Upton celebrated the opening of Upton Park

The Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay, councillors and key community stakeholders for Upton celebrated the opening of Upton Park in June. - Credit: Torbay Council

Individuals and organisations are being encouraged to make full use of Torbay's green spaces for physical activity.

Several free activities are currently taking place across the Bay that are open to all and are aimed at improving participants physical health and mental wellbeing.

During the pandemic lockdowns of 2020 and 2021, Torbay saw a huge surge in the number of people taking part in outdoor physical activity, especially when indoor training facilities were closed, and the amount of time permitted to be outside was limited.

Now Torbay residents are being encouraged by Torbay Council to continue to embrace their lifestyle changes by taking part in outdoor exercise classes.

From gentle yoga and walking to group exercise classes, the sessions which are completely free to join offer plenty of support and motivation for all fitness levels.

Park Yoga takes place on Torre Abbey meadows every Sunday morning throughout the summer from 9.30am to 10.30am.

Bay Walks is a programme of regular led walks in Torquay, Paignton and Brixham.

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All walks are graded to allow those taking part to choose the most suitable one for their ability, with all walks led by a trained volunteer.

Upton Park in Torquay, which has recently benefitted from series of enhancement works, is home to Freemoovement which takes place from 6.30pm every Monday and Thursday.

Most of the Freemoovement sessions don’t involve any equipment, instead use people’s own body weight to get their heart rates up, while music is used to keep everyone moving.

No previous experience is necessary, with the session instructors offering easy, medium and hard versions of each exercise.

Cllr Darren Cowell, deputy leader of Torbay Council, said: “These free exercise classes complement the £150,000 we have committed to invest to improve Torbay’s sport offer which will be delivered through our Torbay on the Move strategy.

"Our new strategy which is a collaboration with Sport Torbay in partnership with local sports clubs will offer more people the opportunity to get involved in sport and provide much-needed funding opportunities to local clubs.”

Cllr Mike Morey, Cabinet member for infrastructure, environment and culture on Torbay Council, said: “Physical activity is so important for people’s health and wellbeing, and Torbay has so many wonderful open green spaces for people to get outside and get moving whilst also having fun and meeting new people.

"All sessions are free and are a great way for people to try something new – whatever their fitness ability.”

The Torbay Sports and Physical Activity team are keen to hear from any local organisations that can provide similar free activities that help people get active while having fun. If you are interested in offering activities, email sports@tobay.gov.uk