Real Results

Get results team

The Dolphin Centre gym team have been working with customers for years to get the results they want from exercise. Please read some of their stories below. 

Alan Smurthwaite

Has multiple sclerosis (MS) – a long-lasting disease that can affect your brain, spinal cord, and the optic nerves in your eyes.

The 52-year old has trouble walking, often feels tired and can find daily tasks a real struggle. Before his MS diagnosis, Alan hadn’t done any regular sport or physical activity.

After joining the Dolphin Centre gym, he was given a tailored programme to work on with specific exercises for his needs and ability – this is refreshed every six to eight weeks.

The change in programme makes it more interesting and challenging for Alan and helps him to maintain his progress. His confidence has grown since joining the Dolphin Centre gym. He can really feel the difference, his posture has improved, along with both his physical and mental health.

Alan really likes the space in the gym and the easy access to the equipment. The instructors make him feel really welcome and comfortable, they provide great support, knowledge and assistance when needed.

Alan feels he can challenge himself in the gym which gives him a focus – he is working on progressing his time on the arm bike and eventually finding the confidence to get into the swimming pool. 

“I love coming to the Dolphin Centre gym, it has made me so much more confident and happier. I can really feel the benefits.

It’s a great place to come, I feel so relaxed here and staff make me feel so welcome and they are so easy to talk to. The facilities are excellent for people with limited ability”.

Lauren Wheeldon, mum to six month old Genevieve

"I can exercise thanks to the Dolphin Centre’s Crèche".

Whenever she fancies a workout in the gym, an exercise class or a swim, Lauren simply books Genevieve into the centre’s crèche, where she is looked after by caring staff, until she returns to pick her up.

Lauren said: “Visiting the Dolphin Centre is a day out for us! Working out, knowing Genevieve is being well cared for in the crèche, gives me great peace of mind. I have time to shower and change before I pick her up. We then go for lunch in the Bistro – which has great facilities for heating up Genevieve’s food. We sometimes join in Fin’s splash time on Monday and Thursday afternoons, which is free for babies. Genevieve loves playing in the toddler pool and I have met some lovely new mums”.

Meet one more of our longest standing Dolphin Centre gym members – 25 Years!

Read Barry's story...

Barry has led an active lifestyle with regularly playing football since his school days.

He trained twice a week and played a full game every weekend up until his mid 40’s. 

Barry’s football mates started going to the Dolphin Centre gym alongside their weekly 5-a-side games.

They encouraged Barry to join so he started to go twice a week.  So, instead of playing football, Barry started training in the gym an also started a circuits and boxercise class in the evening once a week. 

Barry retired from work so he had more time for the Dolphin Centre gym and became a full gym member.

He takes part in the daily NRG Blast sessions in the Dolphin gym. Barry hasn’t got a set programme but he’s happy to get on with his own training, doing cardio and a few weights.

Barry has been generally fit and healthy most of his life and only ever visited the doctor once until recently. He had been struggling with his breathing and was concerned, so a trip to the doctors had discovered he had blood clots on his lungs. He was prescribed medication and told that he could no longer take part in contact sports. Barry uses an inhaler when he exercises but this doesn’t stop him from his regular gym visits. 

“I love going to the Dolphin gym, it’s like a social and it keeps me fit, healthy and active – it’s an important part of my life. The Dolphin gym staff  are really friendly and very knowledgeable, welcoming and supportive.  The daily NRG Blasts are a great way to mix it up in the gym. ”

Six years ago Ken had his annual check-up at the doctors and it came apparent that he was border-line diabetic. At this point, Ken knew he had to do something about it, his lifestyle had to change.

GP Referral

The GP referred Ken to the Dolphin Centre Gym and he was assigned to one of the Get results ream instructors. Ken booked in twelve 1.1 sessions at the Dolphin Centre Gym and he attended three times a week. Before going to the Dolphin Centre Gym, Ken had not done any form of gym exercise since he left school. 

image of Ken

Once Ken got into his programme he soon started to feel better, he had more energy and felt more confident. He visited the doctors after the twelve sessions with the Get results team and was amazed to find that his blood sugar levels had dropped and that he was of less risk of diabetes.  Ken then signed up to the Dolphin Centre Gym on the Senior Membership package. 

Keeping the pain away

Before Ken joined the Dolphin Centre Gym he was 2 stone heavier, and had osteoarthritis in his knees. Today, Ken doesn’t struggle with pain – exercising and keeping active help keep the pain away. Ken also believes in complementary therapies that work alongside his training programme. First thing on a morning Ken will perform Reiki on himself - Ken is a Reiki Master Practitioner Teacher. Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. Later in the day he will do Transcendental Meditation for 20 minutes, twice a day.  

Every 6 weeks Ken is set a new programme within the Dolphin Centre Gym, this helps to keep things interesting and improve progress. Ken uses most of the weight resistant machines and cardio equipment and benefits greatly from the Mywellness account that he uses at home or when he’s on his travels – you can access Mywellness account anywhere! Mywellness monitors your personal progress at the Dolphin Centre Gym and in the Dolphin Centre pool.

Happier and more confident   

Since joining the Dolphin Centre gym, Ken’s knees, legs and lower back are in really good shape and he doesn’t suffer from any pain like he used to. He is much happier and more confident and loves the social side of going to the Dolphin Gym – he has met lots of lovely people.

Feeling Young Again!

Ken continues to mix up his programme and works alongside several members of the Get results team. He feels 30 years old again!

Read Brian's Story...

Life After a Stroke

8 years ago Brian suffered a mini stroke and everyday life changed for him. After 18 months recuperation, of not doing any work or physical activity, Brian decided it was time to get fit again and play the sports he loved. After having the stroke, Brian and his wife thought it best to move to a smaller, more manageable property so they chose to downsize and move to Darlington. 

Ready to Get Fit

As Brian started to feel stronger after his stroke, he decided to do something to get himself fit. His son suggested going to the Dolphin Centre gym as a pay as you go casual member and soon he was going 4 times a week. Brian felt so welcome at the gym and really enjoyed his time there so he decided to sign up for a full senior membership.

Never Felt so Good

Brian would recommend the Dolphin Centre gym to anyone, he says it’s good for him to get out of his usual environment, meet new people, socialise and have something to get up for in the morning. Joining the Dolphin Centre gym has really boosted Brian’s confidence and motivation and he has never felt fitter. He has been a member of the Dolphin Centre gym for over a year now and has seen a noticeable difference physically and mentally. He has met friendly people, shares jokes and chats with lots of friends. 

Setting Personal Goals

Brian is really self motivated in the gym and he likes to set himself a target, something to aim towards his own personal challenges – that’s what keeps him going, his drive to improve his fitness. 

Brian Hasn’t Always Been So Fit

The last 10 years of Brian’s working life as a pub landlord, with long working hours and no play, revolved around work with no leisure time to unwind or take part in healthy activities. He was constantly tired and run down and didn’t have a positive outlook on life.

 Brian now has a great outlook on life and believes that the Dolphin Centre gym keeps him fit and active and also contributes to his an active mind. 

Brian’s Latest Challenge

Brian loves a bit of speed roving and has set himself a few targets.

His first target was to complete

4,000 metres in 22 minutes and his second target was 7,000 metres in 42 minutes. He has beaten both records he set for himself by 2 minutes.

Brian can walk out of the gym with personal satisfaction having completed his challenges, it keeps him motivated and gives him a positive outlook.

A Message From Brian

“The Dolphin Centre is an ideal place to come, it has everything that you need for quality leisure time, the facilities are superb and the centre’s staff are always very friendly and supportive towards your needs. There is always a smiling face to greet me when I walk into the gym. I especially love the friendly banter. I have more motivation than ever before and really enjoy my time in the gym. I also think that it’s great value for money for the facilities and service you get at the Dolphin Centre”. 


Read Sams story...

Sam went from a dress size 12-14 in 2015 to a dress size 8 in 2017

Sam Bakes was out of shape and unmotivated, didn’t eat well and never exercised - until she took advantage of the Get Results Service at the Dolphin Centre Gym in March 2015. Before this, when she joined the Dolphin Gym in 2011, Sam was came really irregularly and just did cardio.

Time to get beach ready

A holiday with the girls encouraged Sam to think about getting fit and healthy. Introduced to one of the Dolphin Centre Gym Instructor, Kris, she began a programme of fitness and nutrition.  While working with the Get Results Team, Sam started to notice changes, especially how she felt about herself. Her clothes began to feel much looser and she had more energy.

Becoming more defined

More recently, Sam was introduced to Eddie, another experienced Instructor of the Get Results Team who gave Sam knowledge and support in getting the results she wanted. Here she worked on more strength and resistance training, focusing on building lean muscle. Sam noticed a difference in her shape and became more defined, whilst burning body fat at the same time!

Working on the body and mind

Sam’s friends and family noticed the change in her well-being and the physical changes were clear to see.  Under the instruction of Kris and Eddie’s programme which incorporated more strength work there were even more noticeable changes in the months to come.  With her newfound knowledge of fitness and nutrition, Sam began to become really interested in learning more about the body and how it works. Sam had now learned that not only was it important to look after your body but it’s also really important to look after your mind.

The Get Results Team have inspired Sam

Sam felt so confident in herself that she embarked on a life-changing trip to Asia alone, which she wouldn’t have even contemplated before joining the Dolphin Centre gym. Additionally, Sam completed a Tough Mudder (a gruelling assault course over  a 20km distance) and climbed Helvellyn, the 3rd biggest mountain in England.

Sam describes the Dolphin Centre Gym as friendly and has a community feel.  It is this welcoming and inspiring environment that has significantly contributed to Sam’s self confidence. Being able to socialise in the gym and chat with like-minded people have really helped Sam with feeling good about herself inside and out. Without the support and motivation from the Get Results Team, Sam would have never pushed herself to achieve these great things.

Career Change for Sam

Sam had already studied Psychology at University so she has a good understanding of how the mind works, with this understanding and the new knowledge she had gained from the Get Results Team she decided to peruse a Master’s Degree in Physiotherapy. This was to both complement her Psychology degree but to also gain experience and knowledge into how to restore movement and reduce the risk of injury or illness in the future. The Career shift all came from the expertise advice given to her by the instructors at the Dolphin Centre Gym.

Credit to the Get Results Team

Sam even gets asked questions about exercises and nutrition by some of the other gym members – which is credit to the Get Results Team.

 Sam really enjoys going to the Dolphin Gym and believes it’s like being part of a family.

“The environment is so welcoming and feels like a small community.  Thank you to the Get Results Team for enhancing my life experiences and opening gateways to new opportunities.”

(Sam Bakes)

Mel has never felt so good

Mel - Get Results
Mel had been overweight for a long time; it was getting her down – she no longer had the energy to run around after her children.  She desperately wanted things to change.

A visit to the local surgery changed everything.  The doctor recommended ‘Exercise on Prescription’ and referred her to the Dolphin Centre.
Mel wasn’t new to the Dolphin Centre, she regularly went swimming with her children.

Mel was assigned to Vicky Grant in May 2015 who then set her up on a programme of healthy eating and exercise.  Mel was also advised to write a food diary and Vicky would monitor this to help make recommendations, such as food swaps to keep her on track. 

Exercise on Prescription

Feeling down about yourself can leave you feeling low in energy, which may also put you off being active.  Regular exercise helps improve your well-being and it’s especially useful for people like Mel who suffer from low moods.

Exercise you enjoy helps you stick with it

Mel enjoyed going swimming with her children at the Dolphin Centre but wanted to do a more social activity for herself.  As well as continuing swimming at the Dolphin Centre, Mel joined the Aqua  Aerobics session with Keith on a Sunday evening, which she loves.  It is a fun way to keep fit and make new friends. Mel felt really comfortable attending these classes.

Mel’s training plan consists of a variety of exercises, such as the bike, treadmill, cross trainer and a few weights. Mel has also started running on the treadmill now that she feels comfortable and trains for 1 & ½ hours, three times a week along with the weight loss group, Slimming World.

Clothes shopping is now so much more exciting!

Clothes shopping was always a dread for Mel but now she loves it and fits into a size 18.
She used to wear dresses over the knees to cover her legs but not anymore – her wardrobe has completely changed!
Even her knee high boots fit perfectly now that her calves are smaller.

Achievements so far

Mel feels so much more motivated, focussed and confident and has so much more energy to be able to run around with her children.  She can focus on her wedding day being the best day of her life as she prepares to get married at the Dolphin Centre

She has made new friends, is much more sociable and feels the Dolphin Centre gym is very welcoming.
Mel feels like a new person – she has never felt so good! 

Advice for others…

“Don’t be afraid; just do it!”

Weight Loss

Mel has lost 4 ½ stone so far since May 2015.

Always consult with your doctor before exercising 

Joanne’s Journey to Good Health

Joanne joined the Dolphin Centre Gym in October 2015. 
She wanted to feel better about herself, lose weight and meet new people. Joanne has always been into fitness and loved the social side of visiting fitness centres and gyms but with family commitments and work circumstances this slowly started to take a back seat. 

No Exercise and Eating Badly

With a husband in the Army and two children, Joanne has always found it hard to maintain consistency with what she ate and also finding the time and place to work out.

After Joanne married, her family were constantly on the move, in and out of hotels and moving to different towns. Joanne was out of a routine, eating badly and wasn’t exercising - her weight slowly crept up and she found herself uncomfortable and unhappy with her body. 

Moving to Darlington

In August 2015 Joanne moved to Darlington and joined the Dolphin Centre Gym in October 2015 with her induction with Stuart. She was given a structured routine with a mix of cardiovascular exercises and weight training.

Since October 2015 Joanne has been working out at the Dolphin Centre Gym weekly.

Weight Loss

With an achievable training programme and a member of Slimming World, Joanne has lost a considerable amount of weight and feels amazing!
Joanne was 15 stone when she joined the Dolphin Centre Gym in October 2015 and she is now only 10 stone (June 2016). She would like to reach her personal goal of 9 ½ stone by the end of summer and then maintain this weight in the future. 

Exercise is so Important

Exercising and keeping fit is really important to Joanne, it makes her feel really uplifted and gives her lots of energy and makes her feel more active and motivated when it comes to playing with her two children. Feeling fitter helps to keep her children happy and active.

Support All the Way!

At the Dolphin Centre Gym Joanne has been given continued support and guidance from the two Instructors, Stuart and Julie. They are always on hand to help her with new exercises or to motivate her on the days she doesn’t feel up to it. Another Dolphin Centre Gym instructor who has had a huge influence on Joanne is Shirley, who works out regular in the gym. She works really hard and you can see the results – Shirley’s motivational words stay with her and help keep her going.

Joanne's Advice for Others

"It may be hard to start at first but stay focussed and keep going – you will get there!"

"Don’t be embarrassed about your size, just be yourself’

Why the Dolphin Centre Gym?

"The Dolphin Centre Gym is well equipped with everything that is needed to work the whole body, along with great instructors on hand throughout your session for guidance, support and motivation. Staff are all very friendly and make you feel really welcome"

What results could you get with the

Meet one of our longest standing members... Cliff

Cliff has always been fit since he was a young boy – always playing football on the school field or out running with his mates. He always played a full 90 minutes of football each weekend and a few games through the week. 

As Cliff got a little older he started to experience problems with his knees – the doctors told him to stop doing so much running or he’ll end up needing a knee operation.

At 40 year’s old, Cliff decided to stop running to prevent any further problems with his knees and thought about trying something different to keep fit. 

Cliff spoke to his doctor who referred him on to the Dolphin Centre’s Referral Scheme. He started going to the Dolphin Centre as a ‘casual’ member at first  visiting the gym twice a week – he had limited availably when he was working full time.

Vicky Grant worked up a tailored programme for Cliff which involved strengthening exercises for the knees and cardio on the stationary bike.  After a few weeks of regularly visiting the gym Cliff could see a huge difference in his knees - He wasn’t experiencing any pain.

When Cliff retired from work he joined up as a full member of the Dolphin Centre gym.  He just focusses on his own programme – a regularly changeable routine. As part of his membership, Cliff uses the Tanita scales each year to make sure he’s still fit and healthy. He just wants to maintain a healthy lifestyle so he uses the Tanita scales mostly as a guide and tool.  

Cliff takes part in the NRG Blast sessions every time he’s in the gym. He has been doing these classes for the last 3 years and loves it. The NRG Blast sessions are great for when you are short for time and want to squeeze in a workout during your busy day. The session is a 20 minute high intensity workout that gets the job done in less time. 

“I love going to the Dolphin gym, it’s like a social and it keeps me fit, healthy and active – it’s an important part of my life. The Dolphin gym staff  are really friendly and very knowledgeable, welcoming and supportive.  I love the new technology that has been installed. I’m really happy with the new look male changing room after the recent refurbishment too.”