Mental Health

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Mental Health

It's well known that regular exercise is good for our bodies – and there's good evidence that it can help improve our mental wellbeing too.

An Overview of Mental Health

Physical activity has a huge potential to enhance our wellbeing. It also plays a role in preventing the development of mental health problems and in improving the quality of life of people experiencing mental health problems.

MIND's online information about getting started with physical activity can help people with mental health problems better understand how sport and exercise can improve their physical and mental health – and overcome some common barriers.

Deciding what's safe for you, how hard you should push yourself and finding the right sport or activity can be difficult when you've got a mental health problem. And we can all struggle finding the motivation to be active.

Benefits

Mood: when asked to rate their mood immediately after periods of physical activity (going for a walk, doing housework) and periods of inactivity (reading a book, watching television), participants felt more content, more awake and calmer after being physically active.When you exercise, your brain chemistry changes through the release of endorphins (or 'feel good' hormones), which can calm anxiety and lift your mood.

Stress: when events occur that make us feel threatened or upset, our body's defences cut in and create a stress response, which may make us feel a variety of uncomfortable physical symptoms. These symptoms are triggered by a rush of stress hormones – the fight or flight response. Adrenaline and noradrenaline raise our blood pressure, increase our heart rate and increase the rate at which we perspire. This causes us to feel stress. Physical activity is a good output for relieving these symptoms and consequently relieving stress.

Self-esteem: how we feel about ourselves and how we perceive our self-worth is a key indicator of our mental wellbeing and our ability to cope with life stressors. Physical activity has been shown to have a positive influence on our self-esteem and self-worth. When you start to see your fitness levels increase and your body improve, it can give your self-esteem a big boost. The sense of achievement you get from learning new skills and achieving your goals can help you feel better about yourself and lift your mood.

Depression and anxiety: physical activity is increasingly used as an alternative treatment for depression. It can also reduce levels of anxiety in people with mild symptoms and may also be helpful for treating clinical anxiety.One study has found that by increasing your activity levels from doing nothing to exercising at least three times a week, you can reduce your risk of depression by almost 20%.

Social and Emotional Benefits: being around other people is good for our mental health and social networks, plus you can maximise the benefits of exercising by doing it with other people. Lots of us enjoy being active because it's fun. Researchers have shown that there's a link between the things we enjoy doing and improvements in our wellbeing overall.

Don't forget the physical benefits too. Being physically active can reduce your risk of some diseases, improve the health of your organs and bones, help you to maintain a healthy weight and give you more energy.

Involvement

Quick tips for being more active - Watch the video for five ways to get moving and feel better.

MIND's online community, Elefriends is a great place for people to find support from people with mental health problems who are using sport to stay well.

Find Mental Health Activities Near You

Use the search below to find local activities near you.

Mental Health Awareness Week

Mon, 18 May 2020

Hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, Mental Health Awareness Week will take place from 18-24 May 2020. This years theme is 'sleep'. The week will focus on the connections between our sleep - or

National Work Life Week

Mon, 12 Oct 2020

National Work Life Week is an opportunity for both employers and employees to focus on well-being at work and work life balance. Employers can use the week to provide activities for staff, and to show

Active10

Exercise...made easy. Did you know that walking briskly for just 10 continuous minutes counts as exercise?

Active10

Exercise...made easy. Did you know that walking briskly for just 10 continuous minutes counts as exercise?

Couch to 5K

The One You Couch to 5k app has been designed to get you off the couch and running in just 9 weeks.

National Governing Bodies

MIND

Contact Name
MIND
Contact Email
contact@mind.org.uk
Contact Telephone
020 8519 2122

Abbey Park

Includes an Outdoor Gym

Accessible Fitness

Fitness classes specifically tailored for beginners. Classes are suitable for all ages/fitness levels.
retroFIT dance/fitness
Bollywood Jhoom!
Easy Chi Yoga
Tai Chi Fit
Fitness Kickboxing
CBE Chair-Based Exercise

Soar Valley Leisure Centre

We are a popular and busy centre in the heart of your local community.

Rutland Rockets Netball Club

Teams compete in the Leicester Youth League (Age: 10-18 years old).

BHANGRABLAZE

Bhangra is a traditional folk dance from the Punjab in India . We use powerful moves from Bhangra for this amazing calorie blazing fitness workout. BhangraBlaze has been developed by a fitness instructor of 20 years experience utilising his fitness and bo

Ratcliffe College

Ratcliffe College is a coeducational Catholic independent boarding and day school in the village of Ratcliffe on the Wreake, Leicestershire, approximately 7 miles from Leicester, England

RideWise

RideWise is a charity dedicated to supporting and enabling the use of sustainable forms of transport. We inspire and support people and organisations to travel more frequently by bikes, trams, trains, buses, walking, cycling, carsharing and even electric

GoodGym

GoodGym

Run to a community organisation or charity within the city to carry out a task or good deed, then run back incorporating a short fitness session.

Rowley Fields Beginners

Rowley Fields Beginners

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

This Girl Can C25K

This Girl Can C25K

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Glenfield Runners

Glenfield Runners

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Beaumont RC Beginners Running Group

Beaumont RC Beginners Running Group

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Birstall Running Club

Birstall Running Club

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Riverside School Gate Running Group - Term Time Only

Riverside School Gate Running Group - Term Time Only

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Road Hoggs Beginners Running Group

Road Hoggs Beginners Running Group

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Team Anstey Couch 2 5k

Team Anstey Couch 2 5k

Beginner friendly running group, led by a qualified and insured Run Leader.

Glen Parva Walking Group

Glen Parva Walking Group

Beginner friendly walking group, led by an insured and trained Walk Leader.

Partners

  • Equality Standard
    H&B LSA
    Safeguarding
    Active Partnerships
    NWL LSA
  • Leicestershire County Council
    Sport England
    Blaby LSA
    Active Leicester
    Melton LSA
  • O&W LSA
    Active Rutland
    Charnwood LSA
    Harborough LSA

Partners

  • Blaby LSA
    Safeguarding
  • Active Partnerships
    Active Rutland
  • Sport England
    Melton LSA
  • O&W LSA
    Active Leicester
  • NWL LSA
    H&B LSA
  • Leicestershire County Council
    Equality Standard
  • Harborough LSA
    Charnwood LSA