6 July 2018


• DW Fitness First has teamed up with the UK’s 4 National Governing Bodies of athletics and running (England Athletics, Scottish Athletics, Athletics Northern Ireland and Welsh Athletics) to help parents and children keep fit
• Research shows parents don’t have time to exercise because of the responsibility of looking after children
• Three quarters say they can’t exercise with their children because they get too distracted and unruly
• More than 8 out of 10 parents said they lost up to 5 hours per week of exercise after starting a family
• As a result on average parents put on one and a half stone after having children
• Parents want to be active as a family because of the positive effects on children and themselves - better sleep, better behaviour happier and stronger family bonding
• DW Fitness First has devised a new routine that can be fitted around children – even when they are unruly

DW Fitness First launches a new campaign designed to get the UK’s families moving more together

Four out of five parents lose five hours of exercise a week after having children, new research shows. 

Parents said that lack of time and because children were too distracted are the main reasons why they gave up on keeping fit, with many not knowing how to exercise with their children. 

As a consequence, parents gain on average 1.5 stone after having children, a new study shows. 

Now gym operator and sports retailer DW Fitness First has devised an exercise plan specifically aimed at helping time-poor parents combine workouts with their everyday routine, turning the school run into an enjoyable family training session. 

Built around a child’s natural behaviour, it allows for their stop-start movements and short attention spans providing parents with an easy solution to keeping active. 

Designed up by Tim Andrews, DW Sport’s Head of Gym Floor Experience, the new exercise plan aims, for the first time, to help parents work out around and with their children’s routines, especially the school run. 

It even includes exercises designed to deal with tantrums and distractions along the way – these indexing as the most significant reasons parents don’t attempt family exercise. The workout plan is supported by behavioural research conducted by Stuart Biddle, Professor of Physical Activity and Health at the University of Southern Queensland, showing we are more likely to continue a new habit if we enjoy the experience and have a physical plan in place. 

Everyone knows that having kids impacts the money left in parent’s pockets but new research reveals today that becoming a parent can have a negative impact on exercise routines, with only 1 in 4 parents revealing they have time to get to the gym and
work out. Of 1,000 parents, over 80% of parents find they have lost between 1 to 5 hours per week off their exercise regime since having children.

The research commissioned by DW Fitness First confirmed that over 1/3 of parents would like to start exercising with their kids (39%) and discovered that less than 1/3 of families currently do exercise together (27%). More than 2/3 of parents claim to have put on weight after having children (74%), with almost half of parents sharing they have put on up to 1.5 stone (47%). Just 7% of parents said having kids has not affected their weight.

However, when questioned about family fitness parents revealed that they see marked benefits when their kids exercise with them as a family - a lack of sibling fights (23%), happier temperament (57%), better behaviour (30%) and better sleep at night (62%). Over 70% of parents shared that they found they bonded better with their children when exercising together.

To help get kids and parents active together, DW Fitness First has today launched a campaign The School Run, encouraging parents to get active with their kids and run their route to school for the nationwide School Run Week (from Monday 25th June), as a way to promote family fitness. Helmed by famous family Una and Ben Foden, the brand has also launched a new family fitness guide, with a selection of exercise routines designed to keep kids entertained and get the whole family moving in sync.

The School Run campaign and exercise plan compliments DW Fitness First’s vision to create an active nation and provides encouragement to both sporty parents and those just looking to move a little more. Aiming to create an ecosystem of exercise, DW Fitness
First is now the official retail and fitness partner of the 4 athletics and running Home Nations (England Athletics, Scottish Athletics, Athletics Northern Ireland and Welsh Athletics). With the primary focus of running, DW Fitness First is working with top running athletes and has become the lead partner of RunTogether, Jog Scotland and Run Wales- successfully motivating thousands of new and enthusiastic runners to join their local running group.

Lee Pinnington, DW Fitness First Marketing Director quote:
"Juggling parenthood with keeping the whole family fit and healthy is tough. This survey shows that while parents want to stay fit, they find it difficult because of the demands of having children. In reality, parents often spend significantly less time exercising after
having children and that can also lead to them putting on weight.

“We are delighted to team up with the UK’s 4 National Governing Bodies of athletics and running to motivate parents to get back on track, we want to support them on their exercise journey.

“Families that run together, stay fit together.”

Tim Andrew’s quote:

“Children are great but they can cause havoc on your workout routine. I have kids and I know how hard it is. We have devised this fitness regime to help and hope it can contribute to keeping the nation fit and healthy. The school run is just one example of
where you can fit in exercise, you just need to make sure invest a little more time into the organisation for a whole load of reward. There are lots of other activities with your kids where you could squeeze in a little workout that benefits both you and them.”

Ben Foden quote:

"Even as a rugby player, you notice how hard it is to maintain an exercise regime when you become a parent. It must be incredibly difficult when exercise is not part and parcel of your job.

“Una and I find it challenging to exercise as a family, but we still believe there is a way to do it, and it is definitely worth it. This workout has really helped us fit exercise around our daily lives with Aoife and Tadhg."

“It's great that DW Fitness First and the UK's 4 National Governing Bodies of Athletics and Running have teamed up together to help busy parents incorporate exercise into their lives. During School Week parents and children can join us to run their School Run."

“Alternatively, parents can download our free family workout to have a go at home.”

For more information, please contact the DW team at Mission: or 020 7845 7800



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