Diet and exercise

Improving your diet and physical activity levels will obviously help to manage your weight but the benefits go way beyond that. A healthy diet and active lifestyle help you to avoid illnesses such as diabetes, as well as having a positive effect on mental well being. What is more, making positive changes doesn’t have to be a chore. In fact, you can have a lot of fun and meet new people doing it.

Get a back to school boost with Change4Life’s Smart Restart

Going back to school after the holidays is a great time to make a fresh start. Change4Life’s new smart restart campaign helps families make one healthy change – like swapping treats for healthier alternatives or building in short bursts of extra activity into the day. With offers, discounts and help from emails, texts and the free smart restart app, there’s lots of support to help turn a healthy change into a healthy habit. See the Smart Restart TV advert or visit the Change4Life Smart Restart page to find out more.

Weight management

Being overweight has consequences. For example, it can lead to a range of health problems including diabetes, heart disease and even some types of cancer. Use the NHS BMI calculator to check out whether your weight is more than it should be.

When it comes to healthy eating and losing weight, all the evidence suggests that if you stick to certain common sense rules, then you’ll succeed. These include things like eating lots of fruit and veg, cutting down on saturated fats and sugars, and importantly, not skipping breakfast. Try the NHS 12-week weight loss programme and see how you get on. Or maybe join a weight loss club or programme where you will get expert advice and meet others with the same goals.

Being active

Increasing our physical activity is of course an important part of losing weight. However, there is far more to gain from an active lifestyle than that. Regular exercise reduces your risk of serious illnesses like heart disease and stroke, as well as providing a boost to your mental wellbeing. It is particularly important as we get older – reducing our risk of poor mobility, accidental falls and even memory problems.

To really reap the rewards of physical activity, it’s important to exercise for the right amount of time and at the right level of intensity. So, for example, adults between the ages of 19 to 64 years should exercise for around two and a half hours a week in total at a level of intensity that leaves you out of breath. It doesn’t matter what it is – walking, cycling or ballroom dancing – it’s the intensity and duration that counts. The NHS Physical Activity guidelines have more information.

Probably the best way to really make a positive change in relation to physical activity is to not do it alone. There are a number of clubs or programmes to suit a whole range of ages, abilities and interests. There’s absolutely no reason why getting physically active shouldn’t also involve a lot of fun and a lot of new friends.


Bracknell Leisure Centre

Bagshot Road, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 9SE Tel (General): 01344 454203 Tel (Office): 01344 861717

Edgbarrow Sports Centre

Grant Road, Crowthorne, Berkshire, RG45 7JL Tel: 01344 776211 Email:

Sandhurst Sports Centre

Owlsmoor Road, Sandhurst, Berkshire, GU47 0SD Tel: 01344 778836 Tel: 01628 627 690

Berkshire Autistic Society

Free family swim sessions are held at swimming pools in Reading, Wokingham and Maidenhead (about once a month). Subsidised trampolining sessions are available for children and adults with ASD in Reading, Maidenhead and Bracknell. Families need to be BAS members to book these sessions. Family membership currently costs £20 p.a. To book call the BAS office on 01189 594 594 or email

Berkshire County Blind Society Get Active Sports Club

This club offers visually impaired members aged 6 to 25 years the same sporting opportunities as their sighted peers. Monthly sessions have included cricket, tennis, jujitsu, basketball, goalball, sitting volleyball and football.

Berkshire Stags

The Stags are a visually impaired Cricket Club. More information can be found by visiting their website.

Woodford Park Leisure Centre in Woodley

Tennis lessons are offered here.

Thames Valley Tigers Goalball Club

They offer Goalball coaching to Visually Impaired people and sighted alike, over the age of 9. Goalball coaching is held at the Bulmershe Leisure Centre, Woodlands Avenue, Woodley, Reading, RG5 3EU

Downshire Golf Complex

Easthampstead Park, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG40 3DH Tel: 01344 302030 Email:

Coral Reef Waterworld

Coral Reef is closed for its transformation until 2017.

Please email for any enquiries while the site is closed.

Nine Mile Ride, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 7JQ Tel: 01344 862525

Age Concern Bracknell Day Centre

27 Worlds End Hill, Winkfield Row, Bracknell RG12 0XH - Armchair-based exercises, held 2 to 3 times a week. The Day Centre takes referrals from GPs, CPNs, Adult Social Care, NHS as well as carers/family members, depending on circumstances. The number of days per week attended depends on the circumstances of each individual and on the availability of places. £17 per day includes transport and a meal. Enquiries on 01344 422048 between 9am and 5pm.

Red Diamond Sports Club (Wokingham, Bracknell and District Sports Association for the Disabled).

They provide sports facilities at Bracknell Leisure Centre for people with all disabilities and all ages, including swimming, table tennis and snooker. Sessions held on Sundays 6pm to 7pm. They also offer field events at various other venues. A small annual fee is payable. Tel: 0785-4142772

Bracknell Forest U3A Walking Group

This group is open to older adults no longer in full time employment and offers two walks per month of varying distances (up to approx 8 miles). There is a small annual subscription.  Contact: Open Learning Centre, Brakenhale School, Rectory Lane, Bracknell RG12 7GR. Tel: 01344 457427


This is a disability sports club with an annual membership fee. Membership is subject to approval and after examination by a qualified physiotherapist. SportsAble provides sports, coaching, facilities and support to people with disabilities who wish to participate in sport and also runs community outreach programmes with schools and other sports and social clubs. The address is Braywick Sports Ground, Maidenhead SL6 1BN Tel: 01628 627 690

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