15 June, 2024

Fundamental Movement Academy Opens State-of-the-Art Facilities in Cheltenham and Evesham

Fundamental Movement Academy is excited to announce the expansion of its state-of-the-art facilities to Cheltenham and Evesham from its Solihull base, furthering its mission to support and inspire over 2,000 children and young people across the UK.

Founded by the resilient and visionary Mary Neeld, Fundamental Movement Academy stands as a testament to her journey of overcoming profound learning difficulties to create a vibrant community hub that champions inclusivity and achievement.

The Cheltenham facility, opened in December 2023, features a Teeny Tiny Town, a role-play experience that is particularly beneficial for SEN schools. This innovative space helps children build confidence and real-life skills in a safe and supportive environment.

The Evesham facility, opened in November 2021, includes a soft play area and a nursery school, further broadening Fundamental Movement Academy’s offerings.

Mary’s story is one of unparalleled determination and triumph. Diagnosed with severe learning difficulties and dyslexia during her school years, she was often underestimated and overlooked. At the age of 13, a recreational trampoline class at Cocksmoors Woods Leisure Centre in Birmingham ignited a passion that transformed her life. Despite being told she couldn’t sit her GCSEs due to her learning difficulties, Mary defied expectations, passing her exams and becoming a national-level performer. She leveraged the discipline and skills learned in trampolining to excel academically in Maths, Science, and English.

In 2002, Mary’s dream took hold with the opening of a local trampoline club at Woodrush High School in Wythall. What started with just 12 members quickly expanded to Cocksmoors Woods Leisure Centre, growing to 100 members training 12 hours a week. Known locally as the go-to destination for trampolining and gymnastics, Mary’s club nurtured talents to national and international levels while remaining accessible to all.

The 2008 economic downturn presented significant challenges as leisure centres closed and school facilities became scarce. Undeterred, Mary transformed Xtreme Trampoline Club into a charity in 2014 and rebranded it as Fundamental Movement Academy. Without any prior business experience, Mary established Fundamental Movement Academy’s first permanent facility in Solihull – a 12,500-square-foot space equipped with Olympic-standard equipment. This facility became a welcoming environment offering classes in trampolining, gymnastics, free running, SEN, rebound therapy, dance, and cheerleading, all under the ethos of “what you can do.”

Mary’s personal experience with learning disabilities uniquely positions her to connect with and coach children facing similar challenges. By incorporating the terminology and teaching methods that worked for her, Mary has created an inclusive environment that fosters confidence and learning through movement.

In 2016, Vicky Chinnock, a former competitor and coach for Mary, joined as company director, becoming the backbone of Fundamental Movement Academy’s operations.

Mary’s commitment to the community extends beyond Fundamental Movement Academy walls. Remembering her own struggles with access to local leisure clubs, she actively supports local sports clubs by providing them with secure venues to operate, ensuring that no child is left without a place to discover their potential.

Mary said: “I don’t know where I would be today if I hadn’t had access to this sport when I was growing up. Each skill in trampolining has a value and has allowed me to learn core subjects like Maths, English, and Science.”

With facilities in Solihull, Cheltenham, and Evesham, Fundamental Movement Academy continues to grow, championing the philosophy that every child can achieve greatness given the right support and opportunities.

For more information about facilities and available services, visit www.fm-academy.co.uk.


Share