Arsenal in the Community

“She is an inspiration to everyone”

Mary is a 79-year-old participant in our Health programme. The free sessions delivered by Arsenal in the Community and Islington Council are part of our Active Spaces programme, which gives local residents the opportunity to exercise with guidance from a qualified fitness and group exercise instructor.

“I initially heard from my neighbour, who said there was an exercise class taking place at the outdoor pitch locally. I had no idea that this was a session run by Arsenal – which made it even better. I liked the idea of being able to get out and be active outdoors with an instructor – so I thought, ‘Why not?’ And I’m so happy I did. I was excited the first time I went but wasn’t sure what to expect. Once I saw that it was through Arsenal, it motivated me even more. I couldn’t wait to tell my family.

“My family are passionate Arsenal fans so I know about the club. I wasn’t aware that they offered different programmes in the community, but after speaking with Joe and learning about what they do… I think it’s amazing. I’m so pleased to be involved. It’s nice that I can now talk to my family about what Arsenal do as well.

“I wasn’t really doing any exercise during lockdown. My balance had started to suffer and there were certain daily tasks I dreaded doing – even the stairs. Now, no worry at all. Joe has suggested a number of exercises I can do during the day at home. I feel stronger and can move better. I even get compliments from my family.

“Joe is so easy going and makes everyone feel comfortable, and there are always alternative exercises to ensure it’s inclusive for all. I make sure to include stretching and moving into my morning routine. It’s one of the first things I do. Oh, and also squats!

“I am always telling people about the exercise class with Arsenal and encouraging them to join. If people are unsure if they would benefit from attending, or whether they would struggle with the exercises, I would say, give it a go!”

Joe, the healthy living co-ordinator, adds: “Mary has such a positive outlook on life and has been an ever-present participant at our outdoor exercise classes since July 2021. She is an inspiration to everyone she meets.”

All fitness levels are welcome. Participants can drop in but booking is preferable, and sessions take place every Monday from 11am to 12pm at the Multi Use Games Area next to Bronte House, just off Mathias Road. To book email


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