Walkers work out as snow stops play

Gym buddies: foreground Vanda Hurn, clockwise from left Tricia Selby, Sue Stokes, Sue Peckitt and Cathy Gosling.

By Betsy Everett

Gales and heavy snow may have stopped an Askrigg women’s walking group in its tracks this week but did nothing to dampen the spirits of at least some of its members.

Instead of heading for the snow-clad hills for their fortnightly ramble, members went to their local gym for a keep fit session when the walk was cancelled.

Vanda Hurn, who led the session, donned special snow shoes for the mile and a half trudge across fields  from Bainbridge to the Wensleydale sport and leisure centre to meet with friends from Askrigg who had also braved the blizzards.
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“We started doing a session at the centre to alternate with the two-weekly walks, but it has become so popular some of us decided to come every week and we weren’t going to be put off by the snow,” said Vanda.

“We’re in the ideal place for some great walks, of course, and as well as providing aerobic exercise it’s a lovely social activity, but it’s also really important to keep our muscles and joints moving in a variety of simple exercises. Working out with a group of friends makes it less daunting and can build confidence in people who might otherwise be apprehensive,” she added.

The centre, run by the Yorebridge Sports Development Association, also has a fully-equipped gym but walking-for-fitness group meet in an adjoining room for an hour’s exercise involving less sophisticated equipment.

For information on charges and joining the gym, which allows concessions on prices for individual classes, call administrator Jan Hale on 01969 650060 or email info@yorebridge-sport.co.uk.