World Champion and Rio 2016 Silver Medal-winning Para-Powerlifter Ali Jawad has unveiled a new fitness app with the aim of filling the ‘gaping void’ in the disability fitness market.
To coincide with International Day of Persons with Disabilities, Jawad has announced the launch of Accessercise, and says this will be the first App of its kind when it launches in five countries (the UK, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand) in the summer of 2021.
The app will serve as a community hub for those with impairments, enabling them to rate local sport and exercise facilities for their accessibility credentials, helping others to explore opportunities in their local area.
Users will be able to explore new venues and their unique accessibility ratings rated by members of the disabled community, helping them to make decisions on the right place to exercise. A special ‘Verified Gyms’ feature will also show users which gyms have been checked and pass the accessibility award in conjunction with partners.
“For too long, disabled people have faced barriers to entry when it comes to identifying the best places to exercise, no matter their level,” said Jawad.
“Whilst we have made huge inroads in the UK and some other nations in changing perceptions and leading the way for sport and exercise for the disability community, we still have a long way to go. Exercise must be seen as something for all, regardless of impairment, and that’s why I have launched AccesserCise – to help break down barriers and change the way the disability community exercises.
“Around 15% of the world’s population is disabled, yet there is still, today, a gaping void in the fitness app market to help make exercise easier and more accessible for disabled people like me. By launching AccesserCise next summer, I want to change that, to help others begin or increase their participation in healthy living, fitness and exercise; and, in doing so, I also want to ensure that we achieve the bigger goal of working with, and influencing, governments to positively change legislation to make it benefit disabled people.
“In the first five countries where AccesserCise will launch next year, there are over 86 million potential users that could benefit from the app. Through AccesserCise, I want to help transform the lives of as many of those people as possible – and make the world a better place to exercise.”
AccesserCise will also include a number of special features, including a first-of-its-kind, ‘evidence-based’ exercise library specifically aimed at those with impairments and a nutrition section, featuring content from NHS dieticians and others. It will also host a number of podcasts, blogs, and a shop to provide the disability community with everything they need to make exercise easier.