Gym fees for lean pockets

2018-03-06 06:01
Simunye Gym.

Simunye Gym.

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Some Imizamo Yethu residents have made keeping fit and living healthily their top priority and they are not allowing their lack of finances stop them from achieving their goals.

In pursuit of a healthy lifestyle, some residents in the area have started the Simunye Gym Club to exercise together. In 2004, some residents started coming together in a shack to exercise. With each member donating a certain amount of money, they were able to buy some equipment each month. They say they are happy to have some equipment to use, but they are still in need of more. When the number of members started growing, there was a need to find a bigger space. The group is now renting a space at Sijonga Phambili, which is much bigger than the shack they were using but still not big enough.

However, what is important to them is exercising and keeping healthy. One of the gym members, Sivuyile Mxakaza, says: “Our aim is to keep fit. With most of the people in our area struggling to make ends meet and living from hand to mouth, we didn’t want that to get in our way of keeping healthy. Most people can’t afford the proper gyms as they are expensive so we thought of starting our own gym. We are happy that the numbers are growing and people are seeing the value of exercising,” he says.

Recently their joining fee went up to R100, with a monthly fee of R50.

“This is just to help us maintain our equipment. We still need a lot of things like mats and weights, so the money contributed by our members helps us to add to the equipment. And because we don’t have a lot of equipment we have to share so we have different time slots. Some of the money is also used to pay rent for the gym premises. What makes us happy is that people are making use of this gym. Our policy is simply that this gym is for the community and we want everyone to be healthy. We know the challenges of not being able to afford proper gym membership and this will help a lot,” he says.

The gym is open to everyone. “We want everyone to benefit from it. It’s also amazing to see an increase in the number of women that come to the gym. We are open to all fitness levels and we have people that can train you until you can do things on your own. The aim is to keep healthy and keep fit so we want everyone to make use of the gym. We are also appealing for equipment that we can use. We want to change our mats now to rubber mats. We also need weights and towels. We are looking for anything that can help us improve our gym.”V To donate, call Sivuyile Mxakaza on 073 000 4826.


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