Latest Laois News: Laois Sports Partnership & Laois Leisure collaborate to increase Physical Activity in Laois

Latest Laois News: Laois Sports Partnership & Laois Leisure collaborate to increase Physical Activity in Laois

Collaboration aims to increase Physical Activity across county

Laois Sports Partnership received €89,400 in this latest round of Covid-19 grant funding. Over €50,000 of this is being utilised with Laois Leisure in a collaboration project. Through this collaboration, Laois Sport Partnership look to continue the implementation of its current strategic plan, with the vision of ‘Everybody Active in County Laois’. This is hoped to be achieved by creating sustainable pathways for all to participate in sport, physical activity, and recreation in County Laois. Using the Covid -19 Grant funding, Laois Sports Partnership are supporting Laois Leisure in the delivery of 14 programmes, training courses and club supports. These include free and subsidised programmes, staff upskilling and free training courses delivered to clubs. Throughout these various programmes and courses, we will engage with many target groups including; men, women, children, older adults, the travelling community, people with disabilities, disadvantaged communities and deis schools.

The aim of this collaboration is to increase sport and physical activity, and to provide opportunities for all to participate in physical activity. Over 800 people will be impacted directly through the planned programmes and courses, and many more through the upskilling of coaches / instructors.

The free programmes include Gym Fitness programmes for Men Only, Women only, and Traveller Only across both Laois Leisure locations (Portlaoise and Portarlington). These classes each contain a 1-hour session followed by a 30-minute group health discussion on a different topic each week. There will be free seated Pilates sessions delivered for disability groups in addition to the Gym Fitness classes, each having a capacity of 15 people per session. 

Laois Sports Partnership & Laois Leisure collaborate to increase Physical Activity in Laois

The funding through Laois LSP will make it possible for Laois Leisure to provide hugely subsidised swimming programmes. There will be an Aqua Social Club and Swim Fit programmes at both Laois Leisure Centres. The Aqua Social Club is a 12-week programme, for only €2.50 per session participants receive a 45 minute instructor led session followed by teas and coffees. This programme aims to get people active while providing a social element for participants to meet new people and form a social club. Swim Fit is the second swimming programme being delivered which will run for 6 week. The programme includes 1 swimming lesson per week for a cost of €25.00. In addition to the six swimming lessons, participants on the programme will have unlimited access to Laois leisure public sessions hours for the duration of the programme.

Upskilling of staff is an area which is being funded through the grant allocation. Laois Leisure Staff will be upskilled in teaching swimming, lifeguarding, kayaking and archery. In total, there will be almost 40 staff members upskilled in these areas, allowing more programmes to be delivered in both Laois Leisure venues. 

There is a large portion of the funding dedicated to benefitting schools through this funding. A minimum of 420 students from 7 deis schools will participate in a 6-week aquatic programme. For transition year students there will be 16 available places on a lifeguard training course, providing teenagers with some valuable skills, and creating an opportunity for employment once certified.

10 clubs in County Laois will be able to avail of free defibrillator training. The RLSS (Royal Life Saving Society) certified training, will be delivered to 100 club members across 10 clubs. This training teaches people the correct processes for using an AED. A defibrillator is a potentially lifesaving piece of equipment and it is vital that people are aware of how to use it correctly and effectively deliver CPR. Each one of these trainings is valued at €500, through this covid-19 funding, 10 clubs will receive it for free. Places for this training are limited and are treated on a first come first served basis.

“ The LSP is excited to collaborate with Laois Leisure to provide opportunities for all to be active in the County through the Covid 19 grant funding . It is now more important than ever that we continue to invest and develop opportunities for participation for an active and healthy Laois. We will continue to work together with our partner agencies and local communities to create an environment that improves activity, health, and wellbeing. These planned activities and courses have something for everyone, for people of all ages and abilities. We look forward to these programmes and courses being delivered and seeing an increase in levels of physical activity from the people of Laois.” Caroline Myers, Laois Sports Partnership.

To book upcoming programmes CLICK HERE. To view more programmes taking place in this project, visit