Cardiff Met gym tones up with £250k new look 

24/10/2012 10:00 


Celebrated members of London 2012’s Paralympics GB squad helped to mark the £250,000 refit of a hi-tech gym at Cardiff Metropolitan University.

Discus gold medalist Aled Sion Davies and javelin specialist Nathan Stephens were among the special guests when the former Wales Sports Centre for the Disabled was relaunched as the Inclusion Fitness Centre after a spectacular refurb. Both Paralympians are Cardiff Met sport students.

Aled said: “It’s a fabulous facility at the heart of Cardiff Met’s Cyncoed Campus and I can see it being a huge hit with students, staff and the public.

Paralympians Nathan Stephens and Aled Davies at the
Inclusion Fitness Centre launch
“London 2012 must have inspired thousands to take up training – or improve what they already do – so this will help satisfy some of that new demand.”

Nathan said: “When I started at Cardiff Met, I used this gym every day - in fact it was one of the reasons I chose to study here. The refurb’s fantastic and I'm sure it will help and inspire many disabled and non-disabled athletes for years to come.”

Other big names at the relaunch included 1964 Olympic long jump gold medalist and Cardiff Met honorary fellow Lynn Davies, Disability Sport Wales national performance manager Anthony Hughes, Sport Wales institute manager Brian Davies and Cardiff Met Vice-Chancellor Professor Antony Chapman. 

Paralympian Aled Davies with Cardiff Met students
Dean of the School of Sport at Cardiff Met, Dave Cobner said: “Paralympians Chris Hallam and John Harris raised the initial £250,000 to originally start the gym. I’m sure Inclusion will be a massive hit with able bodied and disabled students, staff and visitors.

“The new equipment features some real state-of-the-art technology, right up there with the very best gyms around South Wales. Some has been shipped over especially from the USA and is unique to the UK.

“Inclusion helps improve the student experience at Cardiff Met and maintains our place at the heart of the local community we serve.”

Cardiff Met has a long tradition in sport and PE. As well as a thriving sports club scene, around 1,650 students pursue sport and dance related courses at undergraduate and postgraduate level.

Many specialist staff are involved in international sport and provide support to bodies such as UK and Welsh Athletics, the Welsh Rugby Union and Welsh Judo.

Sports facilities include an international standard indoor athletics centre, an artificial pitch, a tennis centre, netball centre, gymnastics training centre and indoor cricket centre. They are renowned as some of the best in the UK.

Inclusion Fitness Centre, with a capacity of around 80, is open seven days a week 7.30am-9.30pm. To find out more about the sports and fitness membership packages available to students, staff and members of the public visit

Cardiff Met Inclusion Gym: The Background

The Wales Sports Centre for the Disabled was a purpose built fitness gym developed at the Cyncoed Campus in partnership with the People Versus Handicap (PVsH) disabled trust. It was fully equipped to cater for disabled and able bodied athletes and included cardio vascular machines, weight stations and warm up/cool down areas. It had a free weights area. Main users were students and staff, who used the facility for individual training and recreational purposes, and members of the local community. Qualified staff carried out fitness assessments, oversaw personal programmes and gave information on fitness classes and courses.

Following a student and staff survey in spring 2011, the decision was taken to invest in new, state-of-the-art facilities and equipment to provide a facelift to the fitness centre. The fitness centre at Cyncoed was expanded to incorporate a larger free weights training area with more equipment, including three Hammer Strength squat racks. Cardio vascular equipment has been replaced with new Life Fitness gear and the area increased in size.

Meanwhile, Cardiff Met’s Llandaff fitness centre has also been re-developed.  

The University is very grateful to the following charitable trusts and foundations for their generosity in supporting the purchase of new equipment for the gym: the Simon Gibson Charitable Trust, the Bruce Wake Charitable Trust, the Ford Britain Trust, the Sir Jules Thorn Charitable Trust and the Oakdale Trust.