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In the first of a new series, Gymtopia founder Ray Algar showcases a corporate social responsibility project in Brazil, in which gym members are asked to donate their shoes.

Members need trainers – or sneakers, depending on where in the world you live – to work out, but what happens to all those shoes when the time comes to replace them? Should we throw them away or put them to better use? Companhia Athletica, one of Brazil’s most established club chains, invites its members to bring their redundant training shoes into the club, where they are laundered, bagged and tagged. The shoes are then donated to local charities that encourage young people from poor backgrounds into sport. Drop into one of Companhia Athletica’s clubs and you will often see pairs of trainers hanging from the walls and ceilings, prompting interesting conversations…

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