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Join the movement

June 01 2022 9 min read


Ever wondered how the rainbow-scattered celebrations of Pride started?

53 years ago, at around 1am on 28th June 1969, a police raid took place at New York’s Stonewall Inn bar - a safe haven for the LGBTQ+ community.

Routine as they were, this raid sparked a revolution that changed history. It kick-started a six-day protest known as the “Stonewall Uprising”.

Who started it? It’s not clear... but the proud partiers of the Stonewall Inn and supportive locals retaliated together.

It wasn’t the first time LGBTQ+ people had fought back against oppression, but it is the best-known for sure and ignited a mass movement across the world.

Thousands marched for liberation… and it went GLOBAL. One year on, in 1970, the first commemorative parade took place in NYC. Officially known as the “Christopher Street Liberation Day March”. Risk of arrest, abuse and attack was overcome by strength and pride, as the LGBTQ+ community and its supporters came together.

Annual Pride marches spread and soon became the worldwide celebration that we know today. Whether it’s a colour-clad party you are attending or a peaceful march, remember that Pride is steeped in activism with a fight against injustice at its heart.


Nicola Adams OBE - UK Gold Medal Boxer

Nicola Adams OBE didn’t roll with the punches; she knocked them down and made history. Through childhood trauma and experiences of prejudice came the first woman ever to become an Olympic gold medal boxing champion. A now double-gold Olympic winner, honoured with an OBE and having hit the dance floor as the first same-sex dance couple on TV show, Strictly Come Dancing, Nicola is expecting a baby with her partner, Ella Baig. A knockout success and an icon.


Jake Daniels - Blackpool Forward

Let’s put the leagues aside for a second and hand it to Jake Daniels, the man of the moment. Recently titled at just 17 years’ old, as the UK's only active male professional footballer to come out publicly as gay. The talented Blackpool forward should be seriously proud of helping others in football and further, to follow in his (epically skilled) footsteps. More MVPs like this, please.

Lia Thomas - UK Transgender Swimmer

Swimmer, Lia Thomas hit headlines earlier this year as the first openly transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division 1 national championship. Flying into 1st for the women's 500- yard freestyle was a real moment, but what’s more impressive is her handling of the controversy surrounding transgender women in sports. She’s fighting for a fairer future for trans-athletes and showing the sporting world that everyone can succeed.


Gareth Thomas - Welsh Rugby Player

International Welsh rugby star and Lions captain, Gareth Thomas bravely tackled coming out as gay in 2009 and announced he was HIV positive 10 years later. The spotlight has been on Gareth ever since, voted as ‘Most Influential Gay Person in the UK’ and Stonewall's ‘Hero of the Year’. Having retired from his 17-year rugby career, his skills off the field are pretty special too. Gareth uses his platform to champion awareness and equality around LGBTQ+, mental health and HIV. Hero status granted.


Megan Rapinoe - American Soccer Player

Pro US soccer star, Megan Rapinoe came out in 2012. She’s made history on and off the pitch, helping to win two World Cups, an Olympic gold medal and being named Women's Player of the Year by FIFA in 2019. An advocate for racism, gender discrimination and equal pay, Megan recently cemented a historic win for the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team with an equal pay deal guaranteed until 2028. She shoots and most definitely scores.


Tom Daley

Adored British hero since his Olympic debut aged 14, Tom Daley dived straight into stardom as Britain's youngest Olympic competitor, winning his first Olympic medal at 18 and now the first British diver to win four Olympic medals. Tom bravely announced he was gay at 19 and is now married to Oscar-winning film screenwriter Dustin Lance Black - a power pair of leading activists for LGBT+ inclusion, particularly in the sporting world.


Charlie Martin

Charlie Martin is a game changer in motorsport, her inspiring story has captured the imagination of people around the world, proving that she represents a paradigm shift in motor racing. Charlie is working towards becoming the first transgender driver to compete in the 24hrs of Le Mans. Charlie is certainly one to watch and definitely making a change in not only the motorsport industry but also in LGBTQ+ inclusion- and we are here for it.


There’s no rule book, but a good place to start? Swat up, and if you don’t know, get to know.

There’s no reason to not understand LGBTQ+ pronouns any longer - you can easily look them up! Time to stop tiptoeing around these terms and get confident so you can respectfully discuss LGBTQ+ topics with your peers.


Come together with the LGBTQ+ community.

Don’t just do the research and call it a day; get out there and show your support! Find local charities and events that welcome allies. Volunteer, join conversations and listen to issues and experiences. There’s no better way to show solidarity than standing side-by-side. Being an ally needs action.

Don’t be silent - speak out.

The sad truth is that prejudice towards LGBTQ+ communities is still present. When you hear or see something wrong, discriminatory or offensive, say so! It isn’t always easy, but it’s one of the most sincere ways you can show up as an ally.


Be open in all the ways you can.

Be open to difficult conversations and hearing LGBTQ+ experiences. Be open to confronting your unconscious bias. Be open to using pronouns correctly without assumption. Be open to getting it wrong and learning. It’s not the mistakes you make that matter; it’s how you learn from them and do better.


Check your privilege.

Being straight and/or cisgender means that you’re not likely to have experienced prejudice around your sexual orientation or gender identity. Recognising that privilege is a great start. Using it as a positive force to break down the system - that is next-level allyship.


At Fitness First, we want to play our part, so we're proud to bring Pride-themed Spin events on 28th June at Fitness First Tottenham Court Road, Baker Street, Bishopsgate, London Bridge Cottons, Wigan and Brighton. We’ve got our best spin instructors lined up so expect high energy, a banging playlist, and plenty of sweat!And a goodie bag, of course.

Everyone's welcome (whether you’re a member or not) for these very special event and you'll get to enjoy our fantastic Club facilities before or after the class, with swimming pool (where available), steam room and/or sauna.

We hope to see you there! Simply use the link below to find out more and book your tickets but be quick as we expect this to be a popular one!

Find out more