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Families go for gold in Commonwealth challenge

Children and adults of all ages are being encouraged to become more active by taking part in a six-week family sporting challenge, which starts on Monday 19 February.

Mansfield District Council in partnership with Mansfield District Leisure Trust and Mansfield School Sports Partnership is holding the challenge linked to the Commonwealth Games, which takes place on Australia's Gold Coast in April. 

This is just one of the initiatives the council is running to encourage more people to get more active and improve their health, fitness and general wellbeing. The Executive Mayor Kate Allsop also recently announced her Healthy Mansfield Commission, which will deliver a series of recommendations that will improve the wellbeing and quality of life of people across the district.

FREE family taster sessions for a range of sports and activities including table tennis, boccia, badminton, gymnastics, sports hall athletics and indoor cycling will be held at leisure centres across the district from Monday 19 to Friday 23 February and again from Tuesday 3 to Friday 6 April. There will also be some boccia and table tennis sessions held at Mansfield Museum during this time.

These free tasters take place during the February half-term and the first week of the school Easter holidays, making it an ideal time for families to get active together. Please note that the sessions are designed for adults to participate in alongside the children.

Each participant will be given a card that will get stamped each time they take part in an activity. Once five activities have been completed, they can enter it into a free prize draw to win a prize. The prizes are a month's swim pass for a child aged under 12 and a month's gym pass for a young person or adult aged over 12. The cards are available now from all the council's leisure centres. 

If you miss any of the free taster sessions you can always join in the activities on a weekly basis. The usual prices will apply.

Details of all the taster sessions during the school holidays as well as all the leisure activities taking place between Saturday 24 February and Thursday 29 March can be found online at www.mansfield.gov.uk/commonwealthchallenge. Please contact each individual leisure centre to check availability and costs. The free indoor cycling sessions at River Maun need to be booked by contacting Shaun Hird, Sports Development Officer, on 01623 463371.

Cllr Andrew Tristram, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Wellbeing at Mansfield District Council, said: "This sporting challenge is a fantastic way for people of all ages to get together with other family members and get more active. 
Why not have some friendly competition and challenge another family to see who can complete the challenge first while trying some new activities? There are lots of free sessions on offer during the February half term holiday and the first week of the Easter holidays making it an ideal opportunity to try something that you've never done before." 

Mansfield's very own Para swimming champion Ollie Hynd, who is coached by Mansfield District Council's swim coach and development officer Glenn Smith, will be among the athletes competing at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in April. 

Working in partnership Mansfield District Council, Mansfield District Leisure Trust and Mansfield School Sport Partnership aim to increase the number of people who are involved in sport, recreation and physical activity either as a participant, coach, volunteer or administrator.

If you would like further information about sports development initiatives, sports clubs or sports activities in the district, please contact Shaun Hird, Sports Development Officer, on 01623 463371 or email sportsdevelopment@mansfield.gov.uk. 

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