New toolkit to help gyms make sport accessible

January 9, 2022 | by Matt Halfpenny


UK Coaching is urging gyms and sports providers to make their facilities more accessible to visually impaired people – and has just launched free training to show them how to do just that.

The new toolkit – Inclusive Facilities: Supporting People with a Visual Impairment, created in partnership with Thomas Pocklington Trust – contains videos and resources leisure operators can use to train staff.

Kelly Rodrigues from UK Coaching said: “Small adjustments can make a huge difference for people with a visual impairment to access leisure facilities and sports, and become more active.

“These can be as simple as a member of staff approaching a visually impaired person and introducing themselves.

“We are asking sports and leisure facilities to encourage all their staff – from the front desk to their personal trainers – to get engaged with this training programme and make sport accessible in their venues.”

Martin Symcox, Sports Development Lead at Thomas Pocklington Trust, said: “One of the greatest barriers to blind and partially sighted people participating in sport is confidence and we know disabled people are twice as likely to be inactive compared to non-disabled people.”

Knowing that a leisure or sport provider understands their needs, helps increase confidence and makes visually impaired people more likely to choose that place to do exercise.”

The toolkit is a free resource open to all leisure providers and contains:

  • What is a visual impairment?
  • What makes an accessible environment?
  • Guiding and communicating
  • The benefits of an accessible environment.

You can access the toolkit by clicking here.