Anytime Fitness and RUOK? partner

By Sarah Stowe | 08 Apr 2019 View comments

Gym chain Anytime Fitness and R U OK? have partnered to help with suicide prevention. The franchise network will support the work of R U OK? through its annual fundraising challenge, Tread As One.

Suicide prevention awareness is a core value of Anytime Fitness and its parent company, Collective Wellness Group.

The 500-strong franchise chain first held the 24-hour fundraising treadmill challenge in 2017.  This sees the clubs keep one or more of their treadmills running for a full 24 hours, whilst participants receive donations for every 15-minute slot they complete on the treadmill.

Some Anytime Fitness club members undertake the full 24 hours on their own.

Anytime Fitness and RUOK?

Anytime Fitness general manager Gordon Martin said “Anytime Fitness lives in the heartland of Australia. Our franchisees, members and staff all over the country look to their local Anytime Fitness as an integral part of their community. We are proud to play such an important role in the lives of Aussies and continue to do so with the Tread As One initiative and R U OK?

“With 89 per cent of Australians* reporting that they know someone who has made a suicide attempt, inspiring and empowering individuals to start a conversation with someone who might be struggling with life is much needed.”

R U OK? is one of Australia’s most recognised suicide prevention charities. The organisation encourages people to hold meaningful conversations with those around them and ask ‘Are you OK?’. Peer-to-peer support can save lives and R U OK? works to equip people with the skills and confidence to navigate a conversation when someone says, “No, I’m not OK.”

Gym franchise community

Katherine Newton, R U OK? CEO says, “We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with Anytime Fitness and spread the R U OK? message through its vibrant community.

“We know that making regular visits to the gym and being with our gym buddies can provide a sense of belonging. We want members to look out for each other and trust their gut when they notice the signs that someone in their gym community might be struggling with life. ”

The Anytime Fitness treadmill challenge was originally started by a group of friends. Bereaved by suicide the friends held a 24-hour challenge with one treadmill in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.

It has now grown to hundreds of locations with thousands of community members coming together to bring mental health awareness to light.

Since 2017, Anytime Fitness has raised more than $800,000 for mental health charities.

*Sanford.R, (2016) ‘ The Ripple Effect: Understanding the Exposure and Impact of Suicide in Australia’. Sydney. Suicide Prevention Australia.