Before Covid came along, we were quite an active family, attending various clubs, attending hikes, regularly walking and exploring the great outdoors and the many gems the UK has to offer. Once lockdown kicked in I guess we became quite lazy with only a handful of gym equipment in the house and only so many parks you can go to in the space of a certain time.
The dogs went out a few times a day and that would be it on some days. We got into quite a lazy habit and one that I really didn't like. So when Everyone Active asked us if we wanted to be involved in their Everyone is Family campaign, it was too good an offer to miss.
We have absolutely loved our week on the campaign and have found a few sports that not only the boys want to continue, but Craig and I do too.
Everyone Active manage over 200 sport and leisure facilities across the country offering a huge range of options for all to get involved in. They are the longest established leisure contractor in the UK and work in conjunction with local authorities.
What is Everyone is Family ?
Everyone Active Centres are all about providing a community hub for local people and families, playing a huge part in helping everyone from parents, grandparents and children get active and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
The Everyone is Family activity plans are helping people be more active over the Summer helping to maintain a healthy everyday routine.
The plans offer something for everyone and you will find a massive range of activities to choose from such as, the more adventurous activities such as rock climbing, to the more relaxing activities such as the Everyone on demand app which has a wide range of online classes such as Pilates.
If you fancy signing up to the the Everyone is Family activity plans you could be in with the chance of winning a bundle of prizes including a family membership worth £600. That is an amazing prize! You can also claim a FREE 7 day fitness pass and a FREE activity plan.
Everyone is family have found in their research that 60% of the us intend to live life to the fullest this summer especially after the last year we have all had. Encouraging you to get off the sofa and exercise together as a family. One thing I have loved doing this last week is doing it all as a family and doing things that are out of the norm. Definitely something I intend to keep doing. 66% of parents have found the kids are more interested in sports since watching events like the Euros, Wimbledon and the Olympics. 78% of parents have claimed their kids are now more active since lockdown after being indoors for such a long time and have become bored looking at screens. Our boys have always been quite active and enjoy getting out and about, but during lockdown it was such a struggle coming up with ways to stay active on such limiting options. We, as a family, have suffered from the Lockdown laziness and are ready to come back fighting fit again.
The centres that we chose to visit and the activities we choose to do were;
Tues - Raich Carter Centre - Hendon, Badminton
Wed - Silksworth Tennis Centre and Swimming Pool - Tennis Lesson
Thurs - Houghton Sports & Wellness centre - Basketball
Fri - Silksworth Tennis Centre and Swimming Pool - Swimming Lessons
Sat- we did a family bike ride
Sun- we joined in the Johnny Marsh Cook along and tried out the everyone active app
Mon - Washington Leisure Centre - Squash
This is how our week went.
Our week started off on the Tuesday and we went to play Badminton at the Raich Carter Centre in Hendon. Now I have to mention that the centre looks a bit run down from the outside, however do not let that put you off, because it is completely different inside, it is clean and huge! I was really impressed with the building actually and the receptionist was lovely and we had a great chat.
Elliot wasn't keen at first, as his hand eye coordination is rubbish, but he eventually got the hang of it, we all loved it by the end and went out and purchased the racquets so we can continue to play badminton. We even booked an extra hour and stayed longer as the boys were enjoying it that much.
Don't worry if you don't have your own equipment, you can hire what you need from your chosen centre.
Today we had a Tennis lesson with Graham, he was so patient with Elliot and I think he was great teaching him some moves. Elliot has also stated he only wants to do Tennis lessons if Graham is teaching him! I have never really been a fan of tennis, I really didn't like it in school and other than the odd bat about in the park never really played it since. However since we visited Silksworth and had a lesson I am keen to learn and play along with the boys. Craig, on the other hand, could already play tennis and was in his element. The centre is our closest and is really impressive. It has a swimming pool, lovely café, a fantastic soft play area, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, various rooms to hire with a massive range of classes and a decent looking gym. I like that they also have a junior gym session for teenagers to get involved in and I think Toby & Adam are interested in joining in with this too. They also have a fantastic play area which is all part of the Silksworth Lakes park. You can also find the Silksworth Skiing centre too, the only Ski slope in the North East, you can read about our previous skiing lesson HERE
Today we headed through to Houghton to play Basketball. I am going to be completely honest, the staff here were lovely and I couldn't fault them, however the hall was a bit worse for wear and they also let the next class in who were using the hall early, so we had to leave before our time was up. This group literally took up the whole corridor and surrounded the door and I just felt really uncomfortable trying to safely distance myself to get out. To then be told by one of those waiting, "it's about time" when we came out of the hall. (We still had at least 10 minutes left on our booking.) I think this needs to be looked at and maybe ask people to wait outside until the hall has been cleared. This was the only bad point in the whole week and I don't think we will be visiting the Houghton site again. Basketball itself, the boys enjoyed themselves, Elliot not so much because he was too small to shoot hoops, but he still had a great workout trying to get the ball from Toby & Adam.
Today was swimming lessons for the boys. Elliot had been really looking forward to it and was so excited to take part in his first lesson. He was supposed to have been joining lessons when we first moved back to Sunderland, but then Covid struck and we never had the chance to get him in. He absolutely loved it, he has never shut up about it since. I think it is safe to say Elliot will be joining Swimming Lessons from now on. Adam & Toby had 30 minutes free time in the pool but felt a bit daft as Summer camp was in so they were massive compared to the other kids. After Elliot's lesson Adam & Toby had a lesson, they both really enjoyed it. We had a catch up with Sara, the Centre's manager, who by the way is lovely and couldn't do enough to help, happy to answer questions and just had a general chit chat. The centre as previously mentioned above is fab, its clean, up to date and massive.(You could actually get lost)
Craig and the boys headed out on a family Bike Ride, whilst I caught up on some admin.
The boys headed up to Silksworth and had a good ride around the park, then they headed down to Hendon Beach and passed Raich Carter on the way back up. They were out a good few hours and had a great workout.
Today was more about taking it slow and enjoy the Everyone Active app. I did have a few issues at first getting it to work but I think this might just be my phone being awkward. We also tried the Johnny Marsh peri peri chicken pitta wraps for lunch too. Johnny Marsh is the new nutritionist and has loads of great advice and recipes over on the website.
Our final day, we headed to Washington Leisure Centre for a few game of Squash. The boys didn't enjoy this and thought it was boring, which I was quite surprised at as I thought they would have loved hitting a ball against a wall and attempting to smack it with the racquet. Elliot really didn't enjoy it and ended up sitting out most of the time, he just couldn't get the hang of it. The only issues we had in this centre was the receptionist had no idea who we were and had no idea what to do about it, but the manager quickly came out and sorted everything out for us. The lights were not working in the one of the Squash courts, but this was addressed and fixed whilst we were there, we just played doubles in the one court instead. I was quite happy about it because there was a freakishly large spider in the other court and I am not a fan. The centre was so so busy, on the way out the queue was out of the door with people coming in, we didn't get the chance to look around with it being so busy but from what we saw it was a great building with some fab facilities. The pool looked fantastic!
Later in the day we booked outdoor tennis courts at Silksworth for the boys to test out their own racquets and they had loads of fun. Courts could do with a spruce up but still totally useable, I actually prefer the indoor courts.
We have had so much fun getting involved in all the activities above, some days were better than others but all in all we had a great week working with Everyone Active. The staff were all lovely and happy to help, the centres were clean and bigger than I expected them to be. Everyone Active has so much to offer families, with various family classes, lessons or just hiring a court.
If you are interested in finding out more you can find all the details Here including details of all the great North East locations.