Dec 11 2008 by Andrew McGilvray, Hamilton Advertiser
Renovated gym will benefit community
A newly-refurbished gym will offer rehabilitation and fitness services to boys’, junior and amateur football teams, rugby and athletics clubs, while also benefiting SPL club Hamilton Accies.
A recent partnership agreement with the club, Core Fitness and Pulse Fitness resulted in an £80,000 renovation of the gym at New Douglas Park.
Brand new cardiovascular and strength training equipment has been installed, much of which is suitable for wheelchair users and rehabilitation clients.
Gym manager Darren Cross hopes that several local clubs will take advantage of the service they offer.
He said: “We do have a few local clubs come to us, like some of the boys’ clubs, who are struggling for a bit of money and when kids are injured it’s going to cost them something like £30 a session to go and see a good physiotherapist.
“What we do is organise programmes that will cost them anything from £5 to £7.50 for a treatment, but they also get the rehab side of it as well.
“Because we’ve had the gym refitted, it’s good for them to go straight from the physio into rehab, and it can get them back that bit faster while saving on the costs, which will be vastly reduced.
“It also saves them from having to wait. I think the average waiting time to see a physio on the NHS is seven weeks, which defeats the point of actually seeing one.”
Darren added: “It’s a great benefit for the kids as well and if you can instil something like this at an early age they will continue to do it all of their lives, whereas it’s difficult for them to pick it up as they get older.
“Because we’ve got the facilities here on site, a lot of the Accies kids are using it because it’s in a controlled environment and they don’t have to go somewhere else where they might not get help or assistance.
“They’re coming here and they’re getting assistance from the sports science team, the football team, or ourselves.
“It doesn’t matter who we get in here – we’ve got some sort of machine or equipment that is going to benefit and help everybody.”
Darren also believes the new gym set-up will benefit Hamilton’s first team, who will be brought more in line with some of the bigger SPL clubs.
He explained: “Now that they’re full-time, we can spend a bit more time with them doing a bit of cross-training so that it’s not all just football-orientated. We can work on their strength and conditioning, and various aspects.
“It’s not just about kicking a ball nowadays – you need to have strength, mobility and flexibility and it helps the different aspects of your game like speed, aggression and things like that.
“It’s a great benefit for the club to get injured players back fit and it helps the players compete against the bigger teams in the league.
“Rangers at Murray Park and Celtic at Lennoxtown have facilities like this and the players have access to them every day, so I don’t see why Hamilton Accies shouldn’t have something like this on site as well.”