Health: Bootcamps are fun and suitable for all

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Taking part in a bootcamp, with its military overtones and images of forced marches across unyielding terrain sounds like a pretty extreme way to get fit.

“Not at all,” says Paul Smith, owner and founder of the highly successful Leeds-based UK Outdoor Fitness Group which runs bootcamp sessions throughout Leeds and at other locations throughout West Yorkshire..

“Our bootcamps are tailored for all levels of fitness and they are a lot of fun,” says Paul.

“ Members range in age from 18 to 60 and from those who have not exercised for years to race-winning athletes.”

Paul studied leisure sport management at Leeds Beckett University before heading off to Spain for nine years.

On his return to the UK he qualified as a personal trainer and, after working at a gym for two years, decided to set up UK Outdoor Fitness Group.

Five years ago, two people turned up to the first event in Roundhay Park. Now, hundreds take part each week at classes in Sheffield, York, Huddersfield, Castleford and Bradford.

“Our members come to us for many different reasons,” he says.

“Some want to lose weight, others just hate going to a gym but most say they just like the idea of being part of a team.

“Depending on which class you are attending it will either be split into beginners, intermediate and advanced or the instructor will give level one, two and three options for each exercise.

“Therefore beginners will not be asked to do anything they can’t do, and exercise enthusiasts will always be challenged and worked hard.

“We train in all weathers - our sessions in the snow are really fun and some of the best we do.

“The social side of the group is very important to us- we encourage everyone to make friends and work together as a team.

“Boot camps are a great way to prepare for mud runs and other obstacle course events . It’s not unusual for the group to take 150 team members to a mud run event and have already won a number of accolades.

Paul says: “In 2014 we won the total warrior fast team, pain barrier fast team and Spartan race top 10 finisher.

“Don’t worry if you’re a novice to these events, we will help you from start to finish and actually race with you on the day.”

There are a number of different membership options depending on how long you want to commit to.

Prices start from £28 for unlimited training sessions but if you prefer to pay as you go this is available for £7 per session.

Members can also take advantage of discounted entrance fees into races.


The UK Outdoor Fitness group is one of the top British bootcamp and outdoor Fitness providers in the UK.

All instructors are suitably qualified, fully insured and have met the health and safety criteria required to be licensed.

To join a race team or train up for an event, 

For more details and to find out about your nearest class visit the website at