Leeds Frontrunners Are Branching Out

Jordan Kelly

After celebrating their best year yet, due to the groups expansion, Leeds Frontrunners are continuing to progress in 2016.


Andrew Frazer, 48, Leeds Frontrunners founder, as well as other members of the group attended a LGBT sport meeting in Leeds city centre on Wednesday. The meeting was organised to help the different groups interact, in the hope they can link together in the future.


Andrew said:  


The event was about giving people opportunity to meet us in a relaxed environment. A place where there may be less pressure on them, rather than at a football pitch or running track ready for action


In addition to the Frontrunners being in attendance, a variety of Leeds’ other sport groups, both LGBT and otherwise, came together to find a way of working as one.


Jack Mac, 21, member of one of the first gay-friendly football teams in the UK, Yorkshire Terriers said:


Tonight is all about connecting with other groups in Leeds. We have made plans as a team to do a parkrun later this year with Leeds Frontrunners, so that’s just one example of how we are going to integrate with other LGBT groups


Kickboxing, football, running and yoga representatives were just some of the groups that showed up on the night.


A representative from OutdoorLads, who organise weekly outdoor social events across the UK and boast nearly 20,000 members, also came along.


Although a meeting primarily for LGBT sport groups in Leeds, all those that came were very much focused on the groups remaining inclusive of everyone.


Helena Byles, 32, Yoga Teacher at We Are Wellness said:


We Are Wellness is a community, everyone is welcome to join in and have fun. I thought tonight would be a great opportunity to just come along and see if anyone would be interested in some workshops or classes, just to try it out


Many of the groups were interested in getting together with the Leeds Frontrunners in some form, as most of the sports involved include some sort of running.


Helena added:


Yoga and running go so well together. Running is quite high impact and tightens the muscles. Whereas yoga allows you to breathe a little more and you build strength in a different way and become more flexible. There is a really nice link between yoga and running and we are looking to do some workshops together in the near future


Members of local sport groups were not the only attendees, local councillors also came along to show their support.


James Lewis, 38, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Resources and Strategy at Leeds City Council said:


It is vital for us as a council to have the healthiest city possible. We are always looking to get more people active. LGBT sport groups give people who traditionally would feel excluded in sport the opportunity to get involved


James Lewis added:


parkrun is another great sporting event in the city as it is getting regular physical activity out there and making it accessible to everyone


Andrew Frazer added:


It was a fantastic turnout for our first event and it was good to see three prominent councillors lending their support. Leeds Frontrunners actually gained 2 more members from this event alone


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