Football stars launch new gym equipment

Posted by: Jamie Sharp - Posted on:

Stars from Leicester City Football Club launched a new piece of gym equipment which will help mental health patients with their physical health.

The Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha Foundation, which was set up in memory of the club’s late owner, donated towards the £5,000 new multi-gym at the Bradgate mental health unit, which is run by Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT).

Players Patson Daka and Harry Souttar joined club ambassador Alan Birchenall to try out the equipment, which gives the Bradgate’s 150 inpatients new options to get or keep fit as part of their mental health recovery.

The multi-gym offers a series of weight-based exercises to complement the gym’s existing treadmills, cycling and rowing machines during supervised sessions. Free weights cannot be used in the gym for health and safety reasons.

Patson Daka said: “This is an amazing facility. The staff here do things that make a huge difference to people’s lives.

“Everyone needs to take care of their physical and mental health. Coming here has been an eye-opener for me. It’s been nice to speak to the staff and service users and to have conversations with them about how the unit supports people.”

Mark Shenton, the gym’s instructor, said: “This is going to make a vast difference to service users.

“Exercise is very important. You are releasing endorphins and serotonin.

“If you do exercise it helps your motivation, your confidence, it helps you to be happier.

“The multi-gym brings back a bit of normality to some people.

“The new equipment has been very popular. It’s made a very big difference to our patients, motivating more of them to get fit and healthy and supporting patients with their recovery. I would like to thank the Vichai Foundation and Leicester City for making it possible.”

The Bradgate offers its patients a range of other options to improve their physical health, including supervised walks, dietary advice, help to stop smoking, Tai chi, low level circuits, stretch and get up and go sessions.

Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha Foundation paid £3,888 towards the multi-gym’s £5,211, with the remainder coming from Raising Health, the charitable arm of Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust. The charity fundraises to support excellent care initiatives, equipment and innovations which go above and beyond core NHS provision to enhance the experience of our patients, service users and staff. See