Keep-fit creche for Sunderland’s active parents

Fitness trainer Melanie Brewis has launched a new work out for kids at Sunderlands Barnes Park

Fitness trainer Melanie Brewis has launched a new work out for kids at Sunderlands Barnes Park

KIDS are keeping fit while their parents work out.

Fitness guru Melanie Brewis hit on the idea of running sessions for youngsters alongside those for mums and dads, after some parents couldn’t arrange childcare while they were exercising in Sunderland’s Barnes Park.

Now every Sunday from 10am, youngsters aged five to 11 can let off steam with games and challenges, while their parents burn calories with a 30-minute exercise blast nearby.

Melanie, who recently completed the London Marathon, is qualified to teach fitness to children aged from five upwards and says, sadly, they are piling on the pounds.

“Over the past 15 years, since starting work in the fitness industry, I have seen a huge decrease in kids’ activity levels and, as a consequence, children are becoming more and more overweight,” she said.

“These sessions are designed to allow kids to workout without realising it by using games, relays and fun activities.

“I also thought by having a 30-minute Metafit workout running alongside the session would encourage parents who struggle with childcare to be able to take part in the session too.”

Sunderland has been labelled a childhood obesity black spot, with figures revealing the city’s kids are some of the fattest in the country.

A shocking 21.1 per cent of Year Six children – 10 and 11-year-olds – are fighting weight issues, well above the national average of 18.7 per cent.

City councillors recently announced that restrictions should be put in place to stop the “poisoning” of young people with sugar-laden junk food.

Cabinet members at Sunderland City Council last week agreed an action plan to tackle the problem of childhood obesity, after hearing evidence from the children’s services scrutiny panel.

A report presented to members with figures for the last two years showed 10 per cent of reception-age children are obese, with local variations of 13 to 17 per cent in some areas.

Place at the classes, which cost £4, must be booked by calling 07956575167 or emailing

For more information, visit




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