*Exclusive offer extension – Early Bird Gym membership!

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Did you know that staying active while at university helps to improve focus, relieve stress and maintain mood?

An exclusive one-off payment of £110 covers you for the entire year and gives you access to everything we have on offer! 

  • unlimited use of all NTU gyms and sports facilities (both City and Clifton)

  • unlimited access to NTU fitness classes and blast sessions with priority booking 

  • free gym induction

  • discounted fitness packages

  • free Play for Fun sessions

  • free court hire

  • access to the University of Nottingham’s casual swim sessions for only £2 per visit

And now there is no need to slow down out of term time. With this membership, you’ll have access to BUCS Universal, the initiative that gives you access to university gyms up and down the country! 

Simply speak to a member of the fitness team about getting your universal pass after you sign up. Find a university gym near you. 

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ATHLETICS & MENTAL HEALTH

Mental health issues are an underrated matter, and one that many students suffer from throughout their time at university. I once read that 1 in 4 people will suffer from it at some point in their life time, which means that it can affect anyone around you. To that end, I’ve always thought that getting involved in your hobbies is an excellent way of getting your mind off troubling issues. Personally, I’ve had a longstanding affair with them, namely depression, as I’ve seen it take the life of one of my best friends from School, as well as having a brief battle with it back in 2012. My experiences might not be the same as everyone else’s, but I figure the least I can do is explain how I dealt with these instances so hopefully others can follow suit.

I had a brief bout of depression back in 2012, at a time when my girlfriend was moving back to Australia, my grandmother was hospitalised, my dog had become sick and my mother had started suffering from anxiety attacks. It only lasted about 4 or 5 months, but they were some of my lowest points. I just had the feeling that I was a burden to people around me, and that others were better than I was. I had counselling, which helped, but I only truly got rid of it when I started my Athletics season in the summer. It felt like I was a completely different person as I was genuinely doing something I loved, and getting better at it. It’s never been as bad as it was back then, and I think that’s because I’ve placed added emphasis on finding what makes me happy and seizing it. For that reason I don’t regret having experienced it, as I know I’ve been through it, and my happiness stems from knowing I don’t feel that way anymore.

Throughout my time at university, I’ve had times where I’ve been lower than I was back then, but I’ve never reverted back to how I felt and being involved in the Athletics club has been a massive part of that, as I’ve met people who have helped me through the hard times. One such time was last year, when I found out that I’d lost a great friend of mine from school to depression. And that’s the harsh truth about depression, and all mental health problems, that people need to realise: it’s a sickness. An example I like to use to explain it is that you wouldn’t say someone who has just lost a battle with cancer died due to a stage 4 cancerous tumour on the lung blocking crucial airways or rupturing and causing internal bleeding… you’d say they died from cancer. In the same way, people who commit suicide don’t die from suicide, that’s just the execution. They’re dying from depression as it’s literally taken them to the point where they believe that if they were removed from the world, then it would be better for their friends and family. That’s what it took me a long time to realise, and I’m grateful that I did.

Therefore my word of advice to people is to find something that you love, and even better, that you’re good at. For me, it was Athletics, as sport has such a positive effect on you in terms of physical health. Also, while you’re getting fitter and better at your sport, you’re also releasing endorphins that are designed to make you feel happy. I never regret going out on a run, I may have no natural fitness at the start, but it’s the fact that you’re getting better after each session that got me hooked on it.

I’d also suggest talking to your friends and family, and surrounding yourself with positive people as sometimes the harder things like telling loved ones what you’re going through are what makes it easier to go through it when you have their support. I’ve always thought that if people are going to be talking about what you’re going through, it’s better that it comes from you first. I started putting on mental health workshops last year for Athletics so that people could come forward and speak to friends that were going through similar experiences and know that they weren’t alone. I think it really helped some people as they realised that isolation they felt wasn’t exclusive to them, and they certainly weren’t going through it alone.

That’s how sport helped me through some tough times, and I suspect it will carry on being a driving force for happiness in my life.

Visit our website for more details about sport at NTU, or our previous blog about how to get active.

Sam Corsan (NTU Athletics President)

Get active at NTU Sport

At NTU we have many different ways you can get involved in sport and exercise, and we currently have some special early bird offers in place for you to make the most of.

1. Two early bird gym membership offers:

   a) Early bird Annual Active Gym Membership = £110 (will increase to £140 on 16 October 2017)

   b) 3-year Special Offer (only available between 1 September – 16 October 2017)

Both memberships will give you:

  • Access to two gyms, the City Suite on City Campus, and the Lee Westwood Sports Centre on Clifton Campus.
  • A free gym induction
  • Discounted fitness packages, including Boditrax scans.
  • Unlimited access to NTU Fitness Classes and Blast Sessions, with priority booking. They are very popular and offer a huge variety of options, with classes taking place at City and Clifton.
  • Free hire of our world-class facilities, such as the brand new tennis centre, sports halls, squash courts, and the 3G to have a bit of fun with your mates.
  • Free Play for Fun sessions, which offer an alternative to just going to the gym by giving you the chance to start something new, get back into a sport you love, make new friends and most importantly, have fun!
  • Access to the University of Nottingham’s casual swim sessions for only £2 per visit.

2. At NTU there are 60 sports clubs for students to participate in, catering for every level of experience.

3. Volunteering is a great way to get involved, and we work in partnership with Nottingham Trent Volunteering to offer a huge range of sport volunteering opportunities.

4. We have very popular intramural leagues in Football, Netball and Rugby, where you can enter your own team. Represent your hall, society, course, or simply round up some of your mates – everyone is welcome.

Experiences of a Sport Champion

There has been five Sport Champions at NTU this year – Patrick (me), Jake, Fay, Harrison and Danielle. You’ve probably seen us around campus in our kit. However, you may not know what we were here for!

The Sport Champions’ role is to get as many students playing social sport as possible. We want all students here at NTU to benefit from the wide range of sports that are on offer, and have a ton of fun whilst playing! We understand that not everyone wants to play sport competitively, that’s why it is so important to provide opportunities for people to have fun and stay active in a relaxed environment.

Sport Champ 2.

Work for us began before the start of term 1, as we helped to organise a development day for the sport committee members at NTU. But after that we were straight into promoting our ‘Play for Fun’ programme during fresher’s week. That week we worked tirelessly to promote and engage as many freshers with our programme. It is definitely one of the perks of our job that we get to chat to our fellow students on a day to day basis to spread our passion for social and beginner sport. It’s also great fun getting people involved who may not have done otherwise. For example, some of you may have seen us set up table tennis or a small tennis court on campus. We like to call these our ‘pop up’ events and you can be sure that you’ll see more of these events next year! Not only do we promote social sport sessions, we get to take part as well. When we go to social sport sessions we try to make sure that it is as inclusive as possible and that everyone is involved and having fun.

Sport Champ 1.

However, this job isn’t all fun and games. We also have some important jobs which can be a little more tiresome. Every week we have to update the social sport register which tells us how many of you are coming to our play for fun sessions. Even though it’s not the most exciting work, it is highly rewarding! When we see how many of you are coming along every week it motivates us to keep going out on campus to use sport as a tool to improve your university experience.

Also, we are lucky to be in a position where NTU sport provided us with the opportunity to enhance our qualifications in sport. For example Fay was able to complete a netball coaching course, and I was able to complete my level 2 rugby coaching badge. Also, Harrison and I were given a great opportunity to attend a development conference hosted by BUCS which gave us some great ideas. The conference was at Leeds Beckett University and there were a several different seminars throughout the day. We had talks about inclusivity in sport, how to engage students in sport, and creative ways to advertise on social media to name just a few. It was a fantastic day that I would highly recommend to anyone who wants to work in sport development.

Sport Champ 3

As my time as a Sport Champion comes to a close I’ve been able to reflect on what I’ve gained. I think this job has been great for me because I have gained valuable experience in the sport sector. I have improved my social skills, my ability to analyse and interpret data, and my organisational skills. All of which are crucial if I am to be get a job in the world of sport. Also, this job is a fantastic way to have fun whilst earning a bit of money. It has never felt like ‘going to work’, it has always been a pleasure! The skills and knowledge I have gained from being a Sport Champion have led me to being accepted to study for an MSc in Sport Policy, Business and Management at the University of Birmingham, which I am extremely excited to start.

Last of all, I’d just like to say good luck to those new students who have been selected to be Sport Champions next year. Good luck and enjoy it!

Patrick Culligan (3rd year Education Studies and Sport Education)

Sport Champ 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hydration is the king of exercise

The most important thing in your kit bag is your water bottle! The body is made up of 60% water, so it’s important we replace what we lose when working out.

On the market these days there’s a vast amount of drinks to take into your session, from isotonic drinks to smart water. But what should you really drink during your workouts?

Let’s look a little closer…

  • If your training up to 60 minutes you’ll only really be needing water.
  • If you’re going longer than an hour, it might be worth grabbing a sports drink to get the extra calories and electrolytes lost during the session.

So with all that’s on offer, where should we look?

Simple water is the best way to go, however, if you want a natural option that’s a little tastier, try adding a slice of orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit, a few mint leaves, or even cucumber to your water to liven things up.

Keep hydrated through the day!

This is the best way to avoid binge drinking and leaving yourself with that feeling of water swaying in your stomach just before you train. The rule of little and often is the one to follow to ensure you not downing water pre workout. A good rule of thumb is to aim to drink 2 litres of water daily.

 

Quick tip

A good way to do this is to get a 2 litre bottle and draw lines on it for every hour between 9am and 4pm, by being at each line every hour you’ll have no problem drinking you way through the bottle.

Your body has great ways to let you know you need a drink:

  • Feeling thirsty? Drink!
  • Urine yellow? Drink!

Pre-workout

It’s okay to drink coffee before a workout. Just be sure to leave enough time between your drink and your exercise to hit the bathroom. Hot drinks increase bowel movements, and let’s be honest, we don’t want to have to run to the toilet mid-session.

Post-workout

We need to be replacing what we’ve lost during our training session. Shakes, isotonic drinks and smart waters work for sure, but why not try making your own? Don’t worry about the sugar, as your body can consume 40% of your daily allowance of glucose post session.

  • 5 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons natural honey
  • 1/3 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 750ml of water

Use warm water the sugar and honey will dissolve quicker then put it in the fridge.

For more hints and tips, follow @NTUFitness.

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NTU Fitness Protein Pancakes!

What you need:

  • 50g rolled oats
    2 eggs
    1 scoop of protein powder of your choice – chocolate or vanilla will work best
    1 mashed banana
    Splash of milk if needed
    1 tsp of coconut oil for the pan

Extra toppings (if you wish):

  • Greek yoghurt
    Blueberries or strawberries
    Nut butter
    Honey or maple syrup

How to make them:

  1. In a blender mix all the ingredients together minus the coconut oil or toppings.
  2. Heat a frying pan and add the coconut oil. Let this melt and cover the pan.
  3. Once the pan is hot an oil has melted, add a ladle of the mixture and move the pan in a circular motion until you have the thickness you are after.
  4. Cook for approximately 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown then remove from the pan.
  5. Add your toppings!

These pancakes are packed with protein, good fats and carbohydrates – so enjoy!

For more hints and tips, follow @NTUFitness on Twitter.

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8 ways to be more active at NTU

It’s that time of year where everyone is struggling to stick to their New Year’s resolution, and most of the time it is based around being more active!

Well look no further… at NTU you are in exactly the right place, as we have many different ways you can get involved in sport and exercise.

8 ways to be more active at NTU:

1. At NTU there are 60 sports clubs for students to participate in, catering for every level of experience.

2. Play for Fun offers an alternative to just going to the gym by giving you the chance to start something new, get back into a sport you love, make new friends and most importantly, have fun!

3. Volunteering is a great way to get involved, and we work in partnership with Nottingham Trent Volunteering to offer a huge range of sport volunteering opportunities.

4. We have very popular intramural leagues in Football, Netball and Rugby, where you can enter your own team. Represent your hall, society, course, or simply round up some of your mates – everyone is welcome.

5. We have two gyms, the City Suite on City Campus, and the Lee Westwood Sports Centre on Clifton Campus.

6. Our Fitness Classes and Blast Sessions are very popular and offer a huge variety of options, with classes taking place at City and Clifton.

7. You can hire our world-class facilities, such as the brand new tennis centre, sports halls, squash courts, and the 3G to have a bit of fun with your mates.

8. We provide sporting opportunities to university staff as well as students, which are aimed to fit in with your busy professional and social lives, whilst relieving some of that day-to-day stress!

Workout Wednesday: Rowing

We all know what it’s like when you can’t be bothered to go to the gym and you make up excuses that it is because you don’t have time to go.

Well stop kidding yourself get yourself to the gym, as this quick workout will only take you 6 minutes!

  • Row at maximal effort for 1 minute
  • Rest for 1 minutes
  • Repeat a further 2 times

Make sure you record you time and try to improve on this the next time you give it a go!

Follow @NTUFitness for more hints and tips, and look out for a new ‘Workout Wednesday’ each week!