Local BS7 Gym launch project to assist MS Charity BrAMS

Tania Burge from BrAMS and Nathan Walsh from BS7 Gym

MS Charity BrAMS, Gloucestershire County Cricket Club and BS7 Gym have announced a charity partnership ahead of launching a unique project – thought to be the only one of its kind in the country, later this week.

For the first time, patients who’ve just been diagnosed with MS will be taking part in special exercise classes – led by the Bristol and Avon Multiple Sclerosis Centre based at Frenchay Hospital, designed to improve patients’ balance, walking, posture, mental health and wellbeing.

Research shows this can have a real positive impact in preventing the onset of symptoms so the patients – who are usually women in their 20s and 30s, then have the confidence to manage their condition positively.

MS Specialist Physiotherapist Tania Burge explains, “For the last few months we’ve been trying to find a gym which is welcoming, not too big or intimidating and with staff who understand patients’ needs. We soon identified BS7 Gym as being the prefect venue so you can imagine our delight when they agreed to partner with us.”

The six week course – the first of which starts on 25th September will be taught by Tania but supported by staff from BS7 Gym. The classes will be small – between 6 and 8 participants so everyone can be given the help they need. Towards the end of the course the participants will be encouraged to work on their own around the gym so once it finishes they’ll have the confidence to continue with exercise in their daily lives.

Nathan Walsh, who’s the Personal Trainer at BS7 Gym is helping deliver the programme, “The gym has had a long tradition in supporting people with a wide range of physical disabilities but when BrAMS approached us about this community project it was something we really wanted to get involved with.

“The team and myself are really looking forward to helping teach not just the patients but also their family and friends how best to manage the condition so the individual can maintain their independence as long as possible.”

The project has been facilitated by Roz Hutchings, Head of Community Engagement at GCCC. “I have first-hand experience of MS as my fiancé’s father was diagnosed with the condition when he was 26 years old. The illness of course doesn’t just affect the individual but has a massive impact on their family and friends too.

“If GCCC and BS7 Gym can do something to help other families facing the same difficulties then I’m proud to be part of that.”



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