New Year swings around, bringing hope and promise but, for some, this time of year can prove difficult. To help tackle mental health problems, Sport Wales and Mind Cymru have teamed up to highlight the significant mental health benefits of moving more and being active.
The two national organisations will be showing real-life case studies, research and examples of the power of exercise to reduce stress, loneliness, anxiety and depression.
Those who share their story include Bob from Powys who felt lost after his wife, Mary, died in October 2020: “I hadn’t woken up alone for 51 years,” said Bob. “It is very difficult to cope with living without someone.” He reached out to his local Mind and has been attending Walk and Talks every week; and being outdoors, with someone to talk to, is helping.
Meanwhile, in Cardiff, Shekira opens up about living with anxiety and how exercise can help manage her feelings. She has since set up a dance class, encouraging others to improve their mental health through dancing.
And in Pontypridd, Alex has navigated various mental health problems such as depression, anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Keen to learn what could help him, he discovered the power of exercise and is now a keen member of Merthyr Tydfil Cycling Club, taking part in group weekend rides as well as time trial events.