Which is the fittest university in the UK? Warwick reveals £49m plan to claim the crown

This new hub isn’t just about sport, it’s about physical activity, health and wellbeing
– Lisa Dodd-Mayne, director of sport and active communities, University of Warwick

The University of Warwick is building a £49m (US$64.6m, €54.9m) sports and wellness hub in a bid to become the “most physically active higher education campus” in the UK by 2020.

Set to open in 2019, the hub will include one of the largest gyms in higher education, spanning 16,684sq ft (1,550sq m), as part of the university’s mission to get “everyone active every day”.

With 300 stations, it will include a high-performance strength and conditioning area; cardiovascular, weights and functional training area; dedicated group cycle studio and four fitness studios.

Other facilities include a 12-lane, 25m swimming pool with a moveable floor; a 16-court sports hall; climbing walls; squash courts; five-a-side football pitches and outdoor 3G pitches and netball courts.

The hub, designed by David Morley Architects and built by Willmott Dixon, will be open to students, staff and the wider community, and aims to “inspire and motivate” greater engagement in exercise.

Lisa Dodd-Mayne, director of sport and active communities at the university, told LCLADglobal: “The university realised the existing sports centre was past its useful life, and students expect to have good facilities for the fees they pay today.

“This new hub isn’t just about sport – it’s about physical activity, health and wellbeing. Rather than asking people to come and do sport, we’re telling them we want to help them to be active and well.

Research from Sheffield Hallam University showed that students who participate in a sports club at university earn more than those not involved in sport, partly because it helps give them life skills such as communication and negotiation skills.”

Technogym will supply the gym equipment and help track participation levels using mywellness cloud technology, and will also implement initiatives across the campus to encourage students to be more physically active.

“Technogym’s ethos and vision to spread the wellness lifestyle and inspire people to take up physical activity to protect their health aligned perfectly to our active campus vision,” added Dodd-Mayne.

The hub was originally scheduled to open in October 2018.

University of Warwick  Technogym  Willmott Dixon  Lisa Dodd-Mayne 
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The University of Warwick is building a £49m (US$64.6m, €54.9m) sports and wellness hub in a bid to become the “most physically active higher education campus” in the UK by 2020. Set to open in 2019, the hub will include one of the largest gyms in higher education, spanning 16,684sq ft (1,550sq m), as part of the university’s mission to get “everyone active every day”. With 300 stations, it will
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The new sports and wellness hub is designed for the public and staff as well as the university's sports teams / University of Warwick
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