Life Leisure fitness experts reach awards finals

Kath Hinsley-Jones

A trio of fitness experts from Stockport have reached the final of national competitions to find the best and most innovative trainers in the country.

Ruth Lynch, who is a head of health, fitness and communities at Life Leisure in Stockport, has been shortlisted for the ‘Outstanding Individual of the Year’ at the UKActive Training Awards for her commitment to learning and development across the service’s 13 facilities.

Kath Hinsley-Jones and Harry Charnock, both newly qualified fitness instructors, have reached the finals of the WorldSkills UK Fitness Trainer Competition that recognises outstanding students and apprentices across the UK.

It’s exciting news for 45-year-old Kath, and Harry, 20, who recently completed their Level Three Certificate in Personal Training at Trafford College and are among just eight competitors to reach the final.

Ruth Lynch

Kath, who worked as a hairdresser, cabin crew and soldier before becoming an instructor at Life Leisure at Hazel Grove, says she is thrilled to reach the final.

The mum-of-two, from Offerton, said: “I’m so happy, I never had much confidence in myself to become a gym instructor – I just thought I liked the gym – so to reach the final is a massive boost.

“I enjoy the gym and I really enjoy teaching. It’s not just about the health benefits, I want people to have fun and feel good in their own skin.”

Kath and Harry had to demonstrate a series of skills before they were chosen as finalists.

They will face a new set of challenges geared towards keeping up with the ongoing changes in the fitness industry at a competition during the WorldSkills UK Live careers fair in Birmingham from November 15-17.

Harry Charnock

Harry, from Cheadle, said: “It’s quite a tough competition. You have to prove you have good knowledge and can deliver the right content, but I think a lot of it is about how you interact with the client.

“I think having a good rapport with clients really helps me do a good job – most of my friends on Facebook are members of the gym!”

Mum-of-two Ruth, who has worked in the leisure industry for 22 years, joining Life Leisure in 2013, is the only female shortlisted in her category and will attend the awards ceremony on November 15.

Ruth’s nomination is in recognition of her dedication to the service. During her time in charge she has seen a 100 percent increase in attendance, introduced courses to focus improving mental health, and introduced a family timetable and fitness festival.

Laura Mylotte, Head of Marketing, from Life Leisure, said: “Ruth epitomises Life Leisure, but also the leisure industry as a whole. Her authentic and caring personality has had a positive impact on so many lives.

“We are proud of all our finalists and wish them the best of luck.”