Charity leisure management company, Park Club, is launching a new project called ‘Active Body & Mind’, supporting adults with mental health difficulties to lead healthier, more active lifestyles. Mental health affects 1 in 4 adults in the UK and being active is great way to improve your physical health and fitness, with evidence also showing it can have a positive effect on your mental wellbeing.

The Active Body & Mind project is a 12-week physical activity referral programme designed to support adults 16+ with mild to moderate depression, stress, anxiety or low mood, to benefit from a more active lifestyle. Local health centre’s, community services and mental health support organisations will be able to refer people onto the ‘Active Body & Mind’ project, giving them access to 6 free gym sessions, swimming or exercise classes at any of the Park Club sites.

Ongoing support will be provided after the six sessions to encourage participants to continue an active lifestyle, through discounted pay as you go sessions and memberships. The aim of the project is to provide the best support pathway possible for participants to start an active lifestyle, improve their physical and mental health and continue being active into the future. Participants are also able to bring a friend or family member with them to offer support and encouragement during the sessions. 

Richard Claydon, Group Health & Wellbeing Manager for Park Club commented, “We are really excited to be launching our Active Body & Mind project, and building partnerships with mental health support organisations to help our communities tackle mental health. The evidence is clear that regular exercise can reduce stress and symptoms of mental health conditions like depression and anxiety, and we look forward to seeing participants benefit from the project”.  

A key partner for this project is MIND and they commented, “Oxfordshire Mind are proud to support the new ‘Active Body and Mind’ initiative at Park Club Leisure. We all know that being physically active is good for our bodies. But our physical health and mental health are closely linked – so physical activity can be very beneficial for our mental health and wellbeing too. Over the coming months we look forward to working with Park Club to promote this brilliant initiative!”

For more information about the project or if you are a mental health support organisation and would like to find out more about our Active Body & Mind project please contact us on .

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