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Les Mills International | Fit Tech promotion
Les Mills International | Fit Tech promotion
Les Mills International | Fit Tech promotion
features

Fit Tech people: Ali Jawad

Paralympic powerlifter and founder, Accessercise

Users can easily identify which facilities in the UK are accessible to the disabled community

Published in Fit Tech 2023 issue 1

What is Accessercise?
Accessercise is one of the first fitness apps specifically designed for the disabled community. It has a unique exercise library that can be tailored to a person’s specific needs. Users can build workouts, schedule these to their calendar and filter, based on a range of options including difficulty, location and available equipment.

There’s a social hub where we interact with our community, both individually and within groups, as well as an ‘explore’ section that has the UK’s fitness facilities mapped out. Those that are rated high enough by our users through our rating system are marked as verified gyms, allowing users to easily identify which facilities are accessible to the disabled community. We’ll soon be adding nutrition information, blogs, podcasts and much more for our users.

How did you come up with the idea?
My co-founder, former international sailor Sam Brearey, and I were discussing the pandemic and the impact on the disabled community, as well as the athletes heading off to Japan for the Olympic Games. Within those discussions we identified there was nothing even close to Accessercise in the market, and it was something that could benefit so many people across the world. As with my sporting career, I don’t do things by halves, so we decided to go all in.

How did you take this from idea to reality?
Sam and I have been good friends for years, and both dive in head first, so that’s what we did with Accessercise. We started with the firm foundation that everything was to be specifically for people with impairments, so everything we did we came back to that and asked ‘could this be more accessible?’.

We then put together an amazing focus group of incredibly driven individuals who shared our vision to change the world. They have been incredible with many suggestions, reviewing different versions of the app and shaping Accessercise to make it what it is now.

There have been ups and downs as with everything new, and we’re sure there will be many highs and lows as we move forward in this journey, but what matters most to us is that we help as many people as we can, and change the world for the better.

How did you first get into powerlifting?
A friend took me to a local gym, which reminded me of something out of a Rocky film. There I started lifting some weights and I got spotted by someone from British Weightlifting who encouraged me to try out and join the team. The rest is history! Having someone believe in me and the ability to access a fitness facility, changed my life. I really hope Accessercise changes the lives of millions.

What can health clubs do to become more accessible?
I think it’s a mixture of physical changes and educational developments. Just because a person with an impairment can get into a building doesn’t make it accessible. The equipment needs to be usable for a range of impairments and the staff need to have the knowledge and training to help and support without patronising or making assumptions. The trainers need the knowledge – which is now contained within Accessercise – to support people while exercising and working out. Small changes and investments can make customers for life.

If clubs want to discuss access for members and/or facility changes then they should get in touch; let’s work together to help everyone.

What are your goals?
We’ll continually look to develop the app and will be adding more impairments and features and expanding across other countries to ensure we can bring support to as many people as possible.

We’ll soon be adding achievements, blogs, podcasts, nutrition information, a shop and several new impairments.

What impacts are you aiming for?
Our primary aim and hope is that Accessercise will help break down the barriers to exercise for the disabled community, whether that’s people wanting to work out at home, or those who need some more advice on exercises suitable for them.

We also want to be a driving force in the education sector through research projects and expanding knowledge of healthy living for people with impairments, as well as helping to highlight accessibility issues within the industry and at government level.

We want to support the drive for real change in what accessibility means and looks like for the disabled community.

How can health club operators get involved?
We want to work with health clubs and support them in delivering change. Let’s work together to make facilities more accessible, so everyone can benefit from verified status on Accessercise, which will help drive customers.

The more we can spread the word, the more people we can help.

Sign up here to get Fit Tech's weekly ezine and every issue of Fit Tech magazine free on digital.
Gallery
More features
Editor's letter

Into the fitaverse

Fitness is already among the top three markets in the metaverse, with new technology and partnerships driving real growth and consumer engagement that looks likely to spill over into health clubs, gyms and studios
Fit Tech people

Ali Jawad

Paralympic powerlifter and founder, Accessercise
Users can easily identify which facilities in the UK are accessible to the disabled community
Fit Tech people

Hannes Sjöblad

MD, DSruptive
We want to give our users an implantable tool that allows them to collect their health data at any time and in any setting
Fit Tech people

Jamie Buck

Co-founder, Active in Time
We created a solution called AiT Voice, which turns digital data into a spoken audio timetable that connects to phone systems
Profile

Fahad Alhagbani: reinventing fitness

Let’s live in the future to improve today
Opinion

Building on the blockchain

For small sports teams looking to compete with giants, blockchain can be a secret weapon explains Lars Rensing, CEO of Protokol
Innovation

Bold move

Our results showed a greater than 60 per cent reduction in falls for individuals who actively participated in Bold’s programme
App analysis

Check your form

Sency’s motion analysis technology is allowing users to check their technique as they exercise. Co-founder and CEO Gal Rotman explains how
Profile

New reality

Sam Cole, CEO of FitXR, talks to Fit Tech about taking digital workouts to the next level, with an immersive, virtual reality fitness club
Profile

Sohail Rashid

35 million people a week participate in strength training. We want Brawn to help this audience achieve their goals
Ageing

Reverse Ageing

Many apps help people track their health, but Humanity founders Peter Ward and Michael Geer have put the focus on ageing, to help users to see the direct repercussions of their habits. They talk to Steph Eaves
App analysis

Going hybrid

Workout Anytime created its app in partnership with Virtuagym. Workout Anytime’s Greg Maurer and Virtuagym’s Hugo Braam explain the process behind its creation
Research

Physical activity monitors boost activity levels

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have conducted a meta analysis of all relevant research and found that the body of evidence shows an impact
Editor's letter

Two-way coaching

Content providers have been hugely active in the fit tech market since the start of the pandemic. We expect the industry to move on from delivering these services on a ‘broadcast-only’ basis as two-way coaching becomes the new USP
Fit Tech People

Laurent Petit

Co-founder, Active Giving
The future of sports and fitness are dependent on the climate. Our goal is to positively influence the future of our planet by instilling a global vision of wellbeing and a sense of collective action
Fit Tech People

Adam Zeitsiff

CEO, Intelivideo
We don’t just create the technology and bail – we support our clients’ ongoing hybridisation efforts
Fit Tech People

Anantharaman Pattabiraman

CEO and co-founder, Auro
When you’re undertaking fitness activities, unless you’re on a stationary bike, in most cases it’s not safe or necessary to be tied to a screen, especially a small screen
Fit Tech People

Mike Hansen

Managing partner, Endorphinz
We noticed a big gap in the market – customers needed better insights but also recommendations on what to do, whether that be customer acquisition, content creation, marketing and more
More features
The internationally-recognised sporting goods exhibition Sports and Fitness Taiwan (TaiSPO) will return on 22-25 March 2023. The event will be held at the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center, Hall 2 (TaiNEX 2) and feature a full range of sporting goods, fitness equipment, sports technology, and workout services for all ages.
Funxtion, the leading B2B digital fitness content SaaS platform company, and CycleMasters, the best in direct-to-consumer indoor virtual cycling experiences, are joining forces to help gym operators elevate their member experience.
Pyramids Centre enhanced thanks to Technogym, BH Live & Portsmouth City Council
Technogym
H Live has grown rapidly since 2010, operating leisure sites, sports and entertainment venues across Dorset, Hampshire and London. Read more
Our HR, employment law, health & safety, and pay & reward services free employers from ...
The company’s core business is the provision of facility development and support for local authorities, ...
On demand
Flooring
Salt therapy products
Management software
The internationally-recognised sporting goods exhibition Sports and Fitness Taiwan (TaiSPO) will return on 22-25 March 2023. The event will be held at the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center, Hall 2 (TaiNEX 2) and feature a full range of sporting goods, fitness equipment, sports technology, and workout services for all ages.
Funxtion, the leading B2B digital fitness content SaaS platform company, and CycleMasters, the best in direct-to-consumer indoor virtual cycling experiences, are joining forces to help gym operators elevate their member experience.
Our HR, employment law, health & safety, and pay & reward services free employers from ...
The company’s core business is the provision of facility development and support for local authorities, ...
Pyramids Centre enhanced thanks to Technogym, BH Live & Portsmouth City Council
Technogym
H Live has grown rapidly since 2010, operating leisure sites, sports and entertainment venues across Dorset, Hampshire and London. Read more
Get Fit Tech
Sign up for the free digital edition of Fit Tech magazine and the free weekly Fit Tech ezine
Sign up
On demand
Flooring
Salt therapy products
Management software

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features

Fit Tech people: Ali Jawad

Paralympic powerlifter and founder, Accessercise

Users can easily identify which facilities in the UK are accessible to the disabled community

Published in Fit Tech 2023 issue 1

What is Accessercise?
Accessercise is one of the first fitness apps specifically designed for the disabled community. It has a unique exercise library that can be tailored to a person’s specific needs. Users can build workouts, schedule these to their calendar and filter, based on a range of options including difficulty, location and available equipment.

There’s a social hub where we interact with our community, both individually and within groups, as well as an ‘explore’ section that has the UK’s fitness facilities mapped out. Those that are rated high enough by our users through our rating system are marked as verified gyms, allowing users to easily identify which facilities are accessible to the disabled community. We’ll soon be adding nutrition information, blogs, podcasts and much more for our users.

How did you come up with the idea?
My co-founder, former international sailor Sam Brearey, and I were discussing the pandemic and the impact on the disabled community, as well as the athletes heading off to Japan for the Olympic Games. Within those discussions we identified there was nothing even close to Accessercise in the market, and it was something that could benefit so many people across the world. As with my sporting career, I don’t do things by halves, so we decided to go all in.

How did you take this from idea to reality?
Sam and I have been good friends for years, and both dive in head first, so that’s what we did with Accessercise. We started with the firm foundation that everything was to be specifically for people with impairments, so everything we did we came back to that and asked ‘could this be more accessible?’.

We then put together an amazing focus group of incredibly driven individuals who shared our vision to change the world. They have been incredible with many suggestions, reviewing different versions of the app and shaping Accessercise to make it what it is now.

There have been ups and downs as with everything new, and we’re sure there will be many highs and lows as we move forward in this journey, but what matters most to us is that we help as many people as we can, and change the world for the better.

How did you first get into powerlifting?
A friend took me to a local gym, which reminded me of something out of a Rocky film. There I started lifting some weights and I got spotted by someone from British Weightlifting who encouraged me to try out and join the team. The rest is history! Having someone believe in me and the ability to access a fitness facility, changed my life. I really hope Accessercise changes the lives of millions.

What can health clubs do to become more accessible?
I think it’s a mixture of physical changes and educational developments. Just because a person with an impairment can get into a building doesn’t make it accessible. The equipment needs to be usable for a range of impairments and the staff need to have the knowledge and training to help and support without patronising or making assumptions. The trainers need the knowledge – which is now contained within Accessercise – to support people while exercising and working out. Small changes and investments can make customers for life.

If clubs want to discuss access for members and/or facility changes then they should get in touch; let’s work together to help everyone.

What are your goals?
We’ll continually look to develop the app and will be adding more impairments and features and expanding across other countries to ensure we can bring support to as many people as possible.

We’ll soon be adding achievements, blogs, podcasts, nutrition information, a shop and several new impairments.

What impacts are you aiming for?
Our primary aim and hope is that Accessercise will help break down the barriers to exercise for the disabled community, whether that’s people wanting to work out at home, or those who need some more advice on exercises suitable for them.

We also want to be a driving force in the education sector through research projects and expanding knowledge of healthy living for people with impairments, as well as helping to highlight accessibility issues within the industry and at government level.

We want to support the drive for real change in what accessibility means and looks like for the disabled community.

How can health club operators get involved?
We want to work with health clubs and support them in delivering change. Let’s work together to make facilities more accessible, so everyone can benefit from verified status on Accessercise, which will help drive customers.

The more we can spread the word, the more people we can help.

Sign up here to get Fit Tech's weekly ezine and every issue of Fit Tech magazine free on digital.
Gallery
More features
Editor's letter

Into the fitaverse

Fitness is already among the top three markets in the metaverse, with new technology and partnerships driving real growth and consumer engagement that looks likely to spill over into health clubs, gyms and studios
Fit Tech people

Ali Jawad

Paralympic powerlifter and founder, Accessercise
Users can easily identify which facilities in the UK are accessible to the disabled community
Fit Tech people

Hannes Sjöblad

MD, DSruptive
We want to give our users an implantable tool that allows them to collect their health data at any time and in any setting
Fit Tech people

Jamie Buck

Co-founder, Active in Time
We created a solution called AiT Voice, which turns digital data into a spoken audio timetable that connects to phone systems
Profile

Fahad Alhagbani: reinventing fitness

Let’s live in the future to improve today
Opinion

Building on the blockchain

For small sports teams looking to compete with giants, blockchain can be a secret weapon explains Lars Rensing, CEO of Protokol
Innovation

Bold move

Our results showed a greater than 60 per cent reduction in falls for individuals who actively participated in Bold’s programme
App analysis

Check your form

Sency’s motion analysis technology is allowing users to check their technique as they exercise. Co-founder and CEO Gal Rotman explains how
Profile

New reality

Sam Cole, CEO of FitXR, talks to Fit Tech about taking digital workouts to the next level, with an immersive, virtual reality fitness club
Profile

Sohail Rashid

35 million people a week participate in strength training. We want Brawn to help this audience achieve their goals
Ageing

Reverse Ageing

Many apps help people track their health, but Humanity founders Peter Ward and Michael Geer have put the focus on ageing, to help users to see the direct repercussions of their habits. They talk to Steph Eaves
App analysis

Going hybrid

Workout Anytime created its app in partnership with Virtuagym. Workout Anytime’s Greg Maurer and Virtuagym’s Hugo Braam explain the process behind its creation
Research

Physical activity monitors boost activity levels

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have conducted a meta analysis of all relevant research and found that the body of evidence shows an impact
Editor's letter

Two-way coaching

Content providers have been hugely active in the fit tech market since the start of the pandemic. We expect the industry to move on from delivering these services on a ‘broadcast-only’ basis as two-way coaching becomes the new USP
Fit Tech People

Laurent Petit

Co-founder, Active Giving
The future of sports and fitness are dependent on the climate. Our goal is to positively influence the future of our planet by instilling a global vision of wellbeing and a sense of collective action
Fit Tech People

Adam Zeitsiff

CEO, Intelivideo
We don’t just create the technology and bail – we support our clients’ ongoing hybridisation efforts
Fit Tech People

Anantharaman Pattabiraman

CEO and co-founder, Auro
When you’re undertaking fitness activities, unless you’re on a stationary bike, in most cases it’s not safe or necessary to be tied to a screen, especially a small screen
Fit Tech People

Mike Hansen

Managing partner, Endorphinz
We noticed a big gap in the market – customers needed better insights but also recommendations on what to do, whether that be customer acquisition, content creation, marketing and more
More features