FIT PILGRIMS meet their ambassador Joel Grant

 

Plymouth Argyle midfielder Joel Grant has been named ambassador for new well-being programme FIT PILGRIMS and went to meet the first cohort of people taking part.

Argyle Community Trust and the Plymouth Argyle Football Club are helping fans to tackle their weight, get healthier and be happier by joining FIT FANS, a free 12-week programme at Home Park.

Launched in January at 30 Clubs in England, the EFL Trust’s FIT FANS programme will be supported by over £2.25 million of National Lottery funding from Sport England and will aim to use the magnetism of football to tackle obesity levels in over 10,000 fans across the UK.

To help inspire the first wave of participants, newly announced ambassador Joel Grant attended the second session to help answer any questions about health, fitness and nutrition.

The 32 year old is proud to not only support the programme but happy to get hands on with the sessions, he said: “I intend to get as involved as possible by coming to sessions and working with people on the goals they want to achieve.

“I started working with the Trust on many of the health and well being campaigns because it’s a great passion of mine and I’ve had personal experience of coming back from injury and how it affected my mental health as well as physical and I hope that I can offer valuable support to those involved.”

A vocal and confident ambassador for school and health & wellbeing programmes, Joel is using the experience of his own challenges to relate to people who feel disengaged and work with them to inspire and motivate them to participate and even achieve more than they expect.

He admitted that this work helped him as much as it helped others, keeping him focused and seeing how little changes can make a big difference: “The whole process of coming back from injury and being involved with FIT FANS and coming along to community events has inspired me to do more and I offer support via my social media platforms to try and talk to more people about healthy living and the pathways available with the Trust.”

36.4 million people (61.4% of England’s population) live within 10 miles of an EFL ground, with four in 10 residents within this catchment area falling into the most-deprived population groups.

Sport England has identified lower physical activity participation rates among people living on low incomes and that is why they have joined forces with the EFL Trust network to help people create a long-term healthy and active lifestyle.

FIT FANS is one of several initiatives to tackle lower physical activity participation rates among people living on low incomes, which is one of Sport England’s key priorities.

“We are delighted to host the 12-week programme at Home Park and in partnership between the club, Argyle Community Trust and the EFL Trust,” said Mark Lovell, Head of Argyle Community Trust.

“FIT FANS is a superb initiative to get people moving and active. The health and well being benefits that come from regular physical exercise makes a genuine difference to people’s lives, and we look forward to welcoming the Green Army and our community on to this free programme.

Health and Disability Officer, Emma Potter added: “We are delighted to have Joel as our FIT FAN ambassador,  Joel is really passionate about making positive changes to benefit people’s health so to have him on board our programme is a huge bonus, it will hopefully motivate and inspire our participants and fans that little bit more to have Joel to look up to as a role model.”

For more details, please contact our Health and Disability Officer Emma Potter on emma.potter@pafc.co.uk