Jana up for top Spirit of Flame award

June 07 2017
Jana up for top Spirit of Flame award

Jana Novotna of Horfield Leisure Centre has been shortlisted for The Spirit of Flame award from UK Active in recognition of all her hard work on the Active Choices Scheme

Jana Novotna of Horfield Leisure Centre has been shortlisted for The Spirit of Flame award from UK Active in recognition of all her hard work on the Active Choices Scheme where she has helped more than 1,000 people over the past 11 years.

Each client is given a tailor-made exercise programme and then supervised and monitored throughout a 12 week period to help achieve their goals and improve their health. Her classes have been so popular that she has expanded them to include more participants, extra classes and even adding a further venue. She now holds regular classes each week which have 25-30 participants per session, some of these have been with Jana for four to five years since being referred from hospital following heart complications.

Throughout all this Jana has managed to regularly teach Kettlebells, Fit Ball and Group Cycling whilst training for various running events such as the London Marathon, Bristol Half Marathon and Bristol 10k. Jana also organises a Christmas party for her Cardiac Rehab group every year which has around 60 attendees, both current and previous participants in the scheme.

“Jana really makes a difference between people exercising and not exercising. Her encouragement and support to all our members is priceless and her classes have a great atmosphere and often when people are back to greater health and do not need to attend the session any more they stay on with the class due to the social interaction which is a credit to her. You can see the passion and commitment that Jana has and she does all of this above and beyond what is asked of her. Best of all she does everything with a smile”, says Ashley Metcalfe, Fitness Manager at Horfield Leisure Centre. “She should win this award for her hard work, commitment and passion for changing people’s lives and helping her clients live longer, healthier and active lives. She will be surprised she has been nominated as it comes naturally for her to do all this without praise”.

“Jana is encouraging and supportive when we exercise, she is friendly and always smiling. She brings a smile to my face. I have had a quadruple heart bypass and she has given me a new lease of life following my operation”, says Bill E who has been attending for four months.

You can vote for Jana at https://ukactiveflame.com/flame-awards


“Energise” is a fitness programme for people suffering from or recovering from cancer. Since we reported on it in December seven people have completed the scheme and around 25 people are currently taking part in it with 10 regular attendees coming to each session.

This is a typical testimonial from someone in the Energise scheme, “I have found it enjoyable as a few of us stay on for a coffee afterwards which makes it a social event as well. I am hoping that if the worse happens and I have further cancer then being fitter will improve my chances of a quicker recovery. I thought that the gym was for “young lycra clad fitness fiends” but I was surprised to find people of all ages, sizes and at differing points of fitness. Nobody judges or takes notice of you, they all respect that everyone is here for the good of their health. Our trainer Ashley Metcalfe guides us through the fitness equipment and we can measure our progress throughout the weeks. Everyone is welcomed and invited to meet for a cuppa and chat in the café afterwards. I have enjoyed the weekly sessions and am now increasing the number of times I visit the gym. I am including exercise as part of my daily routine – something I hadn’t done for a while!”