exercise

Freedog Review: The Largest Urban Activity Centre in Europe

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Freedog is a newly built trampoline centre based in Swindon and the largest indoor park in Europe. Yes you read that right, the largest indoor park in Europe is in the county of Wiltshire!

The urban activity centre have been open for a few weeks, so I thought I would grab my GoPro and five volunteers to go down there to see what all the fuss was about.

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I will be honest with you, when I think of trampolining three things spring to mind; isolation, kids activity and sweat. It’s safe to say that two of the three of my opinions would be changed after my visit.

Upon my arrival, I found myself outside what looked to be an old industrial warehouse, I was intrigued to see how they have transformed this old building into a play area for adults and kids. Freedog did not disappoint, it was as if I had climbed inside my wardrobe and found myself in Narnia because you will be struck by how big the space is and the features within the facility. The park is 36,000 sq ft and boasts over 150 trampolines. A selection of food and drink is available in the arena, and free lockers for you to safely store your possessions.

I found the staff at Freedog were really helpful and friendly, which is refreshing to see as you could sense that they enjoyed their job.

The price to bounce for an hour is £10.00 but on your first visit you will be charged £12.00 as you have to have Freedog’s type of socks, which help give you more grip when doing their activities.

Now to revisit my preconceived thoughts about trampolining, I thought I would have to solo bounce around without really being able to engage with other people, and how wrong I was. The first activity me and my five volunteers done was dodgeball, which was a lot of fun and a great workout. However more importantly I could interact with other people. Fellow trampoliners became apart of a team for the brief period that they were playing. I even witnessed people trying to block the onslaught of dodgeball’s being fired at their team members. I hadn’t anticipated such intensity from other trampoliners, It was like being back in school playing p.e, where nobody wanted to be the reason their team lost so everyone would give one-hundred-percent effort.

The team games didn’t just stop with playing dodgeball, the foam pits became a platform for synchronised flips. I think some people were expecting to stand on a podium at the end of their go and receive a gold medal for the tricks they were pulling off. Maybe that’s the next step for Freedog, who knows but I can just see it now, the future of synchronised swimming being transformed into synchronised trampolining, and all the committee selectors would have to do is visit Freedog and they’d have a team ready to compete.
IMG_1886Other activities available include an open bounce area which offers you the chance to hone in on your bounce skills, and slam dunk which gives trampoliners the chance to dunk a basketball like Michael Jordan.

The other preconceived thought that I was wrong about, was the idea of trampolining being a kids activity. Although when you’re in the park you do feel like a little kid again running around and bouncing all over the place. I would strongly recommend that adults of all ages go down to Freedog and let of some steam and allow themselves to enjoy it. Don’t be the responsible adult taking your kids here and then watching from the cafe, join in and have some fun, let the inner child consume you for an hour.

Unfortunately my idea about the sweat has not changed but what do you expect when you’re bouncing around continuously for an hour.

The urban activity centre is a great new attraction to have in Swindon and will give their citizens an extra spring in their step, just make sure you are ready for a workout.

Below is the GoPro footage of the activities and fun that you can have at Freedog. Please watch, comment,like and subscribe.

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A Young Persons Guide To Overcoming Gout

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As a gout sufferer, I have learnt a few tricks along the way to help minimise the gout attack and maintain a diet that is beneficial to limit irritating the gout itself. What I am about to share with you will not only include food but also medicine to help you.

What is causing this rise in younger people with gout?

The main factors that trigger gout are obesity, high intakes of alcohol, high blood pressure and diabetes.

What medication will help with a gout attack?

Medication is a way to manage gout and can be crucial in the turn around time to get you back to normal without having to be in agony! I experienced the full force of gout one early morning and was in excruciating pain until I took some tablets which worked wonders and relieved the pain within a couple of hours. These tablets are Naproxen BP 500 mg (I would highly recommend these.) A key point that I must stress is that you don’t take just any painkiller or other types of medicine as they can do more damage than help! Medicine to stay away from at all costs are diuretics, bendroflumethiazide, chemotherapy medicines and aspirin. The reason these should be avoided is because they will raise the level of uric acid in you and that will only make your situation much worse.

Healthy lifestyle choices
Healthy lifestyle choices

Image via creative commons – Stewart Chambers

How can I reduce the chances of getting gout without taking medicine?

There are a couple of things which you can do to reduce your chances of getting gout. One thing you can do is change your diet and this will make a big difference, especially by cutting out red meat and alcohol. Keeping hydrated is a sufficient way to ensure that there is a reduced risk of crystals forming in the joints. This will in turn lessen gout attacks. Overindulging in sugary and sweetened foods can lead to weight gain which is linked with obesity which is risk factor of developing gout.

Try to eat your five portions per day as this will be key in keeping on track. A secret tip of mine is to eat black cherries/juice as this helps neutralise uric acid. I also have some sort of vitamin C everyday as this lowers uric acid in your blood. Frequent exercise will also give you a lifestyle that will keep you on the right track to stopping gout attacks.

The secret ingredient
The secret ingredient

Image via creative commons – Ton Rulkens

This shows healthy eating is  more popular
This shows healthy eating is more popular