University of Brighton Gym Eastbourne

University of Brighton Gym Eastbourne

New gym opens at Eastbourne


With cutting-edge equipment, gadgets galore and the opportunity to watch movies from your iPod while you train, Eastbourne’s new £750,000 fitness suite is the ultimate combo of innovation and inspiration.

Those familiar with the traditional gymnasiums and weights areas that used to make up Eastbourne Sport Centre’s fitness suite will be in for a shock when they see the new development. Resplendent in purple and metallic grey, the new gym is chock full of state-of-the-art equipment and technology which is already proving a hit with students and lecturers alike.

University of Brighton Gym Eastbourne The Chelsea School received funding through the Capital Project Initiative by the University to develop a fitness suite. Both Chelsea School and Sport Brighton were quick to combine their expertise to increase academic teaching opportunities for the sports science programme and provide excellent facilities for the University community. Costing £750,000, the fitness suite is testament to the collaborative efforts of The Chelsea School, Sport Brighton and all those involved in bringing the project to fruition.

Rob Harley, Principle Lecturer in Sports and Exercise Science at Chelsea School, said:

“It’s a million times better than before… I’m very excited to be using the facilities as are the students. There’s a positive atmosphere surrounding the gym.”

University of Brighton Gym Eastbourne, The collaboration between Chelsea School and Sport Brighton produced an equipment spec tailored to benefit the Sports and Exercise Science lecturers and students as well as general gym users. In other words, the partnership delivered the kind of gadgetry guaranteed to get any sports scientist or trainer salivating.

The more technical additions to the new fitness suite include an analysis room which contains an Isokinetic dynamometer (for measuring muscle strength). There’s also a Plyometrics track to be used in academic lectures and supervised sessions and six lifting areas with two force analysis platforms, making the gym one of the best equipped in the country.

Rob Harley said: “It’s the result of a year speaking to the best in the industry to ensure that we provide state-of-the-art equipment that meets a variety of needs… There is everything a trainer could want to work with an athlete. And from a teaching point of you, it can be sold not just as a gym but as a scientific centre.”

University of Brighton Gym Eastbourne, The gym’s CON-TREX Isokinetic dynamometer Multi Joint system is a real asset, combining with a linear press to improve leg strength by analysing motion. The equipment, designed in Switzerland, allows users to increase balance and power through a variety of exercises, making it ideal for both athletes and those who want to build strength for everyday activities. Impressively, the new Eastbourne gym is the only place in the country to have one.

Students also have the opportunity to wear a specially-designed bodice called the Hammer Strength Training Vest, which attaches to cables in order to create resistance in all planes of movement. You may not want to wear it out on the town but when it comes to increasing your agility, muscle strength and power, it really is a must-have accessory. Rob Harley said: “It’s fantastic for resistance training as you can either add resistance or opt for extra assistance for over-speed training.”

The desire to combine cutting-edge technology and gizmos to make the experience of keeping fit effective and more enjoyable has also seen the introduction of LifeFitness Treadmills. With built-in iPod docking stations and FreeSat television, the treadmills make it possible to watch your favourite shows or films while burning calories. Imagine running a marathon to Apocalypse Now? Or sprinting to your ultimate gym tunes?

For those who come to the gym to escape the lure of TV, there is the option to use a virtual personal trainer to create an altogether different programme. Each machine is fitted with a Virtual trainer where you can download workouts, watch video examples, as well as receive tips. There’s even a USB slot which allows you to follow pre-made programmes and keep data on all your work outs so you can track your progress online for that added motivational spark.

And you can still find the more traditional gym equipment in the balcony above the sports hall, a private area ideal for sessions such as Cardiac Rehab and the TOFF’s (The Over Fifty Five’s) exclusive sessions.

Colin Ayling, a member of the TOFF’s programme, said: “It’s very spacious and I particularly like that the Strength and Conditioning and weights area is separate from the Cardio-Vascular equipment.”

Alongside the fitness suite, there is also a full programme of classes due to take place in the soon-to-be-converted studio including new additions like Zumba, Swiss ball, yoga and xBiking.

Given the facilities available, the prices have been kept surprisingly low, meaning that there are absolutely no excuses when it comes to making full use of the brand-spanking new equipment. Students can use the full range of facilities from as little as £9.59 a month; staff from £11.25 and the public £12.92 per month.

Rob Harley said: “The space and the kit mean it is possible to cater for the whole spectrum from 16 year old school kids to 80 year olds, focussing on health and wellbeing or improving fitness. Everyone can train optimally.”

A committee is still debating what to name the fitness suite following a recent competition to find a suitable moniker. Along with the new gym at The Falmer Sports Centre, the Eastbourne fitness suite is something that everyone can be very proud of.

John Hill, Operations Manager for Sport Brighton, said: “It’s been great working alongside another department to deliver a project that covers not only academic needs but the leisure time of our students, staff and also the local community. At long last, Eastbourne campus has the fitness facility of the quality it deserves.”