Doncaster Rovers’ assistant manager, Cliff Byrne, surprised participants at the weekly Fit Rovers Men’s vets final session of the year, when he turned up during the circuit session last week!
The regulars attending on Thursday evening, took part in a festive themed session, with their usual circuit session including a special twist. An added karaoke station.
Kitted out in Christmas jumpers and hats, participants moved between stations, determined by a roll of a dice, with the possibility of skipping certain activities throughout the hour. Those landing on the karaoke station, picked from an array of Christmas songs, to sing together during the round of activities.
While there, Byrne moved around different groups, chatting to participants while completing some exercises himself, before joining in with the final group photo of 2023.
Speaking about what he’d seen, Byrne said: “It’s excellent. I’ve joined in a little bit this evening & I keep saying I’m going to come down and join in the whole session.
“Exercise is brilliant. It’s not just about the exercise, but getting out and socialising. It’s a massive group here and there’s a lot of camaraderie too.
“It’s something that’s really good for you, healthy body, healthy mind. They complement each other both ways and I’m a bit advocate of it, I get out and do some exercise and running.
“It’s not just Fit Rovers Mens, there’s courses for others too. Anyone that’s thinking about it, just come down and try it and see how you go.”
Funded by the NHS South Yorkshire ICB, the team behind Fit Rovers have delivered 12 courses over the course of the year (4 ladies, 4 mens, 3 daytime and 1 LGBTQ+ course) with participants able to move on to the vets sessions after completion.
The 263 participants involved in the 12 courses this year, have together lost of total of 450.9kg in weight and an incredible 1306cm off the waist circumference, alongside an average mental health improvement of 21.54%.
With the number of adults experiencing loneliness and social isolation in England remaining consistent over the past 5 years, Byrne spoke of how beneficial the sessions are for people who may have this as their only contact with other people during the week: “It’s massively important, the contact, the time with fellow males and females.
“Not everybody wants to go to the gym, not everybody wants a membership, some people just like turning up and seeing familiar faces, catching up on different sports or life in general and something that is part of their daily routine.
“It seems like a real open friendly environment which again, you come when you can, and enjoy it.”
Lauren Cuttell, Health & Wellbeing Manager spoke of the success of the programme in 2023: “We’ve finished another successful year of out Fit Rovers delivery.
“It’s been an incredible year of impactful provision across the city of Doncaster, with another 12 courses completed, alongside the success of our vets sessions and the additional activities we put on including the ladies ‘Who Dares Wins’ event and the annual mens play on the pitch.
“We can’t wait to start back in 2024 and help more participants achieve their goals.”
For more information on the Fit Rovers Men’s courses, please contact fitrovers@
Alternatively, you can phone 01302 762565 where a member of the team will be able to provide more information too.