Leeds Rugby Foundation have been helping local Leeds men tackle their health issues by giving them the opportunity to train like the Rhinos.
Over the last eight weeks fifteen men have taken part in the XL Factor weight management programme, run by the Leeds Rugby Foundation. With a focus on losing weight and improving fitness levels the Foundation Staff have delivered a unique programme that has allowed participants to receive expert advice from the Leeds Rhinos coaching staff whilst also using the team's facilities at their Kirkstall training ground. Working with NHS Leeds to help deliver their 10% Adult Weight Management programme the Leeds Rugby Foundation's XL Factor has been a massive success. In total the fifteen men who took part lost a combined 73lb, which is the best total of all the NHS run weight management programmes. As well as this weight loss there have been significant health improvements, with each reducing their blood pressure and cholesterol levels as a result. Speaking about the benefits of the XL Factor, Leeds Rugby Foundation's Community Development Office Sam Horner, who helped deliver the programme said, "We are really pleased with the results which have shown what positive changes can be made in a relatively short space of time. "Men can generally be reluctant to attend programmes like this but with health issues increasing, especially amongst young adult men, these schemes can offer real benefits. The support we receive from the Rhinos makes it more engaging for participants and it has proved to be a great way for them to kick start a healthier lifestyle. Not only has the health levels for those who completed the eight weeks improved but many have been able to turn their lives around and have continued to stay active through theTouch Rugby competition we hold on a Tuesday night. I would like to say well done to all those who took part, they worked really hard and should be proud of their achievements."