What is B:Active and why should you get involved?

Welcome to B:Active, an inclusive activity programme designed for student life – from social sports to fitness classes, the aim is to make it as easy, fun and affordable as possible to get moving and look after your mental and physical wellbeing. But why is B:Active so great?

Location, location, location!

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Why joining a sports club will be one of the best things you’ll do at university

There is a lot going on during your first few weeks of university so don’t worry if you didn’t feel ready to sign up to any clubs or societies just yet – there are still plenty of opportunities to get involved this year. All student clubs run a little differently, however most welcome all abilities and may offer Performance teams that focus on competing, as well as social sessions for those just wanting to play for fun.

In this blog post we’ll be looking at some of the reasons joining a sports club can enhance your university experience!

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8 Reasons to join a class

Did you know that there are over 80 classes a week at the Indoor Sports Centre? With classes from Body Combat to Yoga fit to Spin, there is something to suit everybody and any level. Today we will be taking a look at  reasons why joining a fitness class can be a fantastic addition to your active life. Most of our fitness classes operate from the Indoor Sports Centre on Tyndall Avenue and are included in the Active Memberships. Our B:Active programme also runs its own series of low-cost and free classes on Campus and in the Residences, you can check out both timetables on our website.

1. It’s a great way to make connections

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Bristol Active Bucketlist

It’s that time again where we begin to welcome new and returning back to Bristol! In this post, we are sharing some Bristol-based activities that we think deserve a spot on your active bucket list. If you do try any of our suggestions, let us know, we’d love to see your paddle boarding pictures or your new favorite trail. 

Run the downs

Clifton Downs is a running hot spot. With great routes and amazing views over the Avon Gorge, it’s the perfect place to clock up some miles and explore a bit of Bristol whilst you are at it. New to Bristol? The Welcome Fair will be an opportunity to get to know this iconic Bristol location. Keep an eye on our social media for the launch of the 2022 Bristol Run Series if your keen to set some running goals and join our community.

Visit the Wave

Bristol may not be known for being a surfer’s paradise, but it doesn’t mean you can’t catch some waves.  Just a 20-minute drive out of Bristol City Centre, this inland surfing pool offers a range of sessions, whether you are a surfing pro and just want to get out there or if you are a complete beginner. Surfing your thing? Make sure you check out the University of Bristol Surf Society for surf gear access, socials and weekends away. Surf @ Bristol SU

Get climbing

Bristol students love to climb and luckily there’s plenty of climbing centers  around the city where you can reach some new heights. Climbing is not only great for strengthening, it’s also an effective form of cardio and has several psychological and personal benefits from improved goal setting to increased self-confidence.

Cycle to Bath

If you’ve bought your bike to university (wise choice!) then you must cycle the famous Bristol to Bath Railway Path, a 13-mile off-road route suitable for cyclists and walkers.  It might be a little longer than the 20-minute train ride, but you will spot plenty of wildlife and work up a sweat. Just make sure you stop for tea and cake in beautiful Bath!

Watch a game

You don’t have to go very far to catch a match! On Wednesday nights you’ll be able to watch our #WeAreBristol student clubs compete at our Coombe Dingle Sports Facility. Our Pavilion will be serving food and the bar will be open too for the complete game-day experience. If you’d rather be on the pitch, there will be opportunities at the start of term to ‘Give It a Go’ and trial a range of sports clubs and activities for free What’s On & Events @ Bristol SU

Get paddling

Bristol is famous for it’s picturesque and lively harbourside, but you don’t just have to explore it by foot. Recent years have seen more and more people opting to paddleboard their way along the harbour. Stand Up Paddleboard Bristol offer a Paddleboard Harbourside tour suitable for complete beginners and provide all the kit and instruction you’ll need for a safe and enjoyable paddle.

Climb lots and lots of hills

This is an easy one, you won’t get very far in Bristol without going upwards at some point. It may be steep but you’ll thank all the inclines later. Walking uphill can boost your respiratory and lung function as well as strengthening your circulatory system, not to mention a huge endorphin rush!

Walk and explore

The best way to get to know a new city is to get out and explore. Grab your flatmates, some comfy shoes and a bottle of water and find your new favourite spot whilst getting active too. Just 30 minutes of walking a day can improve your overall health and boost mental well-being. If you like a bit of structure to your walk, check out one of Bristol’s many walking tours and learn about everything Bristol, from Banksy to Blackbeard. Our B:Active Residence programme even offers a walking tour for free – keep an eye out on their social media @bristolunibactive to find out more!

Try a water sport

There may be a few water-based activities on our list but sometimes sport is just that little bit more exciting off dry-land. University of Bristol Sailing are one of our clubs offering social sessions as a chance to learn to sail in a fun and friendly way, with taster sessions happening throughout October as part of ‘Give it a Go’. The University of Bristol Sport app is a great way to find out more about our clubs and find out all you need to know about trial sessions, memberships and more!

Join the Colour Run

Every year in September, University of Bristol Sport and Bristol SU host a 3k, very fun and equally as messy, Colour Run. This year is no different and will be held on 26 September at the Coombe Dingle. It’s a chance to run, walk or skip around the course whilst getting covered in colourful paint (we can guarantee great photos!). Tickets are available to book now! Bristol SU Beta

 

 

Free ways to have an active life in Bristol

 

Being on a University budget shouldn’t stop you from living a healthy, active life. In this post we will be looking at some free-of-charge opportunities to exercise your body and boost your mood, available both within the university and the wider community!

1) Swap treadmills for pavements.

Up your step count, improve your wellbeing and explore some of Bristol’s beautiful walks. Local walking/running spots include Harborside, Leigh Woods, Ashton court and the stretch between your front door and the supermarket! It doesn’t need to be a marathon,  just make sure you stay safe, wear reflective clothing where possible and know your route. The Bristol Run Series happens annually and is a great opportunity to train with an aim!

2) Book a B:Active class

Did you know that many of our fitness classes that are part of our B:Active Residence programme are free of charge for those living in University-allocated accommodation? You can try yoga, conditioning, pilates and more without making a dent in your budget. It’s also a great way to meet other students in your accommodation outside of your flat.

 

3) Give it a Go

During Welcome Week you’ll have the opportunity to try out a huge range of sport and fitness society sessions for free. This will give you the chance to meet new people and try some new things without having to commit to a membership first. These sessions are run with Bristol SU so keep an eye on their socials and website for more details.

4) Attend our Giant Fitness Class

This September we are giving you the chance to try out three of our most popular classes for free at our Giant Fitness Class. This will be a 90 minute session, made up of 3 classes held at the Indoor Sports Centre, no booking required. You can find out more here…
https://bit.ly/3yNWWeO

couple doing press-ups

5) Get out and about

Bristol is definitely not short of green spaces, many sporting free courts and even outdoor gyms. Brandon Hill Park is a great example – it’s a workout getting there in the first place!

 

6) Be app-y 

This year, many of our Run Series Members have inspired us by opting to walk/run with the help of podcasts and apps. From one that makes you feel like you are running away from a Zombie to Sarah Millican trying to get you off your couch, it’s one way to spruce up a run for free

7) Keep it green

If you are keen to get working out from home but don’t have the equipment, there are plenty of ways to use things around your house (full wine bottles are great as weights!)  or even using sites such as Freecycle to get hold of the right kit without making a dent.

8) Get online

The University of Bristol App is the home of 50+ On Demand workouts, ready whenever you are. Home workouts are great for when you’re on a tight schedule, studying from home or even if you just aren’t ready yet to return to our facilities.

9) Follow @Bristoluniactive on Instagram

Here you’ll find loads of active inspiration, tips, updates and even live -streamed fitness classes – it’s really as easy as that! B:Active is the perfect access point for students who are looking to get moving and connect with our community.

10) Stay connected

We will always keep you updated on all opportunities and flag up those that don’t require membership or cost. Make sure you are following us on our social medias, check in on our website or pop in a say hello to our team at the welcome desks at our facilities

 

10 things you can do with University of Bristol Sport that aren’t sport

Despite our name, we are not here to just support students and staff in pursuing competitive sport. In fact, we offer a huge range of activities, events, classes and opportunities for all of our community. Keeping active plays a key part in helping you maintain a healthy, happy life at university and there are more ways than you might think to get involved! In this blog post we’ll be sharing some of these.

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What to Eat Before and During a Run

Written by Dr Fiona Lithander, Performance Nutritionist and Dietitian

Dr. Fiona Lithander
Dr. Fiona Lithander


In this blog post, our in-house Dietician and Nutrition expert, Dr Fiona Lithander, gives us the information and advice that we need to stay well-fuelled before and during a long run. Whether you’re taking part in the University of Bristol Run Series Half Marathon or you like to de-stress with a long run in the evenings and on weekend, this post is for you!

 

 

Before a run

The key thing is to start your run well fuelled and well hydrated.  A pre-race meal is recommended about 3-4 hours before the start of the race. This may differ slightly between people which is why it is important to practice, to see what works best for you.

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Running for Wellbeing (part two) – The Five Ways

Sick of wellbeing? We don’t blame you!

Wellbeing is quite the topic right now and, because of that fact, wellbeing might possibly be a source of confusion, concern and annoyance for you. As something currently quite ill defined, tricky to grasp and without any consensus on actions or deliverables, I can really understand this. 

via GIPHY

Without being overly reductionist, let’s try in this short blog post to clear up the issue. 

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Starting a new Sports Club

The University of Bristol Student Roundnet Club was new on the scene in 2019. In this post Committee member, Antoine, writes about the experience of setting up a brand new Bristol SU Sports Club, and shares top tips for any students interested in doing the same thing next year with another new sport!

What is Roundnet?

Roundnet is a relatively new sport which is very popular in the US and is taking the rest of the world by storm. The sport is amazing because it can be played almost anywhere and really caters to all abilities; from your casual BBQ with friends to competing in a World Championship final. The European and UK Roundnet scenes are thriving with new and exciting clubs and tournaments, so it was definitely a great time to get into the sport. Roundnet is also well known for its incredibly friendly and inclusive community, which is at the core of our Club’s ethos.

Roundnet is a sport played by four players in teams of two around a circular net. Once the ball is served onto the net, the other pair have up to three touches to hit it back onto the net. Once the ball contacts the net, possession changes to the other team. There are no boundaries, it is a 360º game! A team wins a point once the other team is unable to return the ball legally onto the net.

Roundnet Rules graphic

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Faces of the Run Series: Roy Kiruri

The University of Bristol Run Series is a community and wellbeing focused virtual event. Through this event we are encouraging staff, students, alumni and people of Bristol to re-connect with one another over a common goal – be that 5k, 10k a Half Marathon (or all three!) – with the aim of bettering our physical and mental health during a time of anxiety, uncertainty and isolation.

Our ‘Faces of the Run Series’ blog posts will shine a light on individuals who have signed up to one, or more, of our virtual events and ask them to share what brought them to our virtual community this year! Through this blog series, we hope to introduce you to your fellow runners by putting a face to the Facebook profile, email address or Strava user we’ve only had the opportunity to ‘meet’ in 2D so far!

Bio

Name: Roy Kiruri
Staff or Student: Bristol SU Sabbatical Officer, International Students
Run Series Event: Whole Series!

 

 

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