Blog: "I feel included and part of a community."
During the COVID-19 pandemic our Get Out Get Active (GOGA) localities and partners are continuing to develop and support disabled and non-disabled people to stay connected and keep active together. Our GOGA Wales coordinator, Bronnie Griffiths, who is based in Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT), worked with partner Wayne from the MAT Academy to develop creative and innovative ways to engage participants through digital and traditional formats.
In this blog we hear from Megan, who has been taking part in Get Out Get Active sessions and has helped with adapting them to be more inclusive.
"Hi, my name is Megan Price and I have a passion for Goalball. I began playing Goalball due to my Visual Impairment.
Outside of Goalball it is difficult to train due to accessibility barriers, challenges, and a general lack of disability awareness. It’s even harder to keep active during lockdown.
How often do you find something where you think, it’s not 100% accessible, but it’s fun and they’re open to conversation? If you are like me, it is not that often at all.
Being trapped in this COVID- 19 pandemic, it feels like accessibility and inclusion have had to take a giant back step. After a short time of sitting down and relaxing, I felt that I needed to be more active.
I wanted to ensure that while in lockdown I did not get too unfit. I started to do little things like, walking my dog, using my Wii Fit and trying Yoga via Alexa. After a while it got boring. I’m not very good at keeping focused when exercising on my own, so I wanted to find something a bit more engaging and that gives me more motivation.
I was on Facebook and I came across a sponsored post, which was from Get Out Get Active Wales. They were advertising “Wayne’s Weekly Workout” - a free, weekly workout session over Zoom. It looked interesting, but as I have a visual impairment, I wanted to know more. I messaged GOGA and asked how accessible to sessions would be for me and if I can ask questions and get clarity on exercises during the session?
I had a really uplifting message back answering all my questions. They pretty much said, “give it a try and feel free to tell us what you need so we can do our best to support you to ensure it is accessible to you”. It is not very often I get that sort of response.
Alongside a couple of others who wanted to try it out, we gave it a go, and it was good, really good! The guy that delivered it, Wayne, was really engaging, friendly and constantly checked that we all understood and knew what we were doing.
It is one of the most accessible workouts I have EVER been a part of. Wayne was very patient and more than anything made me feel like I could ask questions. I gave feedback to GOGA and session by session, it just got better and better. I have to say for most of 2020, my personal life and my sanity, was fully dependant on the workout and yoga sessions. They keep me active, keep me motivated and skilled for Goalball.
With Wayne’s Weekly Workouts I get to fully participate. I can ask questions when I need, and he started to pause his workout timer to give us more clarity on exercises. I really felt I was getting the benefits of being active. I also feel included in a community of others who enjoy working out too."
About Get Out Get Active
Get Out Get Active (GOGA) is a programme that supports disabled and non-disabled people to enjoy being active together. Activity Alliance is the creator and lead partner. The programme is funded by Spirit of 2012, Sport England and London Marathon Charitable Trust.