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Family Inspired To Set Up Gym by Their Boy With Down Syndrome

ReachMD Healthcare Image
03/21/2023
bbc.com

The family of a boy with Down's syndrome say he was the driving force behind launching a community gym that was accessible to all.

The LS Gymnastics Crewe Academy, run by the family, trains competitive athletes as well as members with physical or learning disabilities.

Set up four years ago, the not-for-profit facility has 900 members, including 10-year-old Hugo.

His mum Candy said Hugo had been the club's inspiration.

Hugo's sister, and gymnastics coach, Ellie said opening the facility had been a "huge achievement for us all".

"Having a space for Hugo, it just makes me quite emotional really, in the sense that he's so happy here.

"Having Hugo has just spurred us on to make sure that he had... somewhere where he can work with us forever."

A sensory space had been created at the gym for Hugo and others to use, "filled with all the things that make him happy," she explained.

"It doesn't just aid the sensory kids, all of our children come in here."

Her mum added: "[Having Hugo] was the best thing that ever happened to me.

"It really does put life in perspective - I realised with Hugo that every day you could smile."

Lawrence Caygill from Down Syndrome Cheshire said there were many barriers for people to access sports facilities.

"Sometimes we need to work with current providers to slightly change the way the delivery might happen," he said.

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Schedule13 Jun 2024