The man who quit Google... to help residents keep fit

The man who quit Google... to help residents keep fit

A GYM run in partnership with Batley Bulldogs is helping local residents of all ages to keep fit.

Batley Community Gym, based on Heritage Road next to the Fox’s Biscuit Stadium, holds instructor-led training sessions for the elderly, young people with Downs Syndrome and inclusive mixed classes. 

The Lottery-funded project has a particular focus on bringing people together and developing links between different cultures and groups. 

Batley Sporting Charitable Trust, an independent body set up by the Bulldogs, runs the sessions. 

Community engagement manager Sharaz Ajmal said: ‘We’re just trying to get across to the public that health, well-being and fitness is a big thing – both mentally and physically.” 

Sharaz, who also coaches the Dewsbury Moor under 13s rugby league side, gave up a job with Google to focus on his work with the community gym. 

“I worked for Google for 12 years, as a sales and marketing executive,” he said. “I hit a crossroads and started thinking about how I earned my money and whether I felt satisfied doing what I was doing. 

“I feel a lot happier knowing I’ve helped someone in a positive manner – to me, compared to what I did before, this is head and shoulders above it.” 

Over-50s classes take place on  Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8am to 9.30am, and open classes are held every Wednesday from 7pm to 8pm. 

Ladies-only sessions run on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 9.30am and 11am, and from 6pm to 7pm on Wednesdays. 

Sessions cost £2, with some of the money going towards improving facilities in the gym. 

Other funds are used for any charitable work the club wishes to support. 

Anyone who would like to know more can contact Sharaz on 07956 830684.

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