Move more for your mental health

Issued by High Life Highland

High Life Highland supporting Mental Health Awareness Week

Numerous studies show that taking part in physical activity is one of the best things that people can do for their physical and mental health and during Mental Health Awareness Week (13th – 19th May), High Life Highland is highlighting the variety of classes and services it has to offer to support everyone with their wellbeing.

This year’s theme for Mental Health Awareness Week is all about movement and moving more to improve our mental health – whether that’s a walk in the park, a dance or exercise class, going to the gym, gardening – whatever works!

Research suggests that 45% of individuals who exercised for 30-60 minutes, three to five times a week experienced improved mental health, while regular exercise can reduce the risk of depression in adults by 26%.

In addition to this, mental well-being can be improved in a variety of other ways –– for example learning new skills, taking time out in nature or volunteering. Many mental health charities as well as High Life Highland are promoting ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’, outlining a series of simple steps that people can take:

  • Connect – good relationships with family, friends, colleagues, neighbours and people with similar interests are important for mental wellbeing.
  • Learn – there are lots of different ways to bring learning into our lives. Try something new, rediscover an old interest, sign up for a course.
  • Be active – discovering a physical activity which we enjoy and that suits our level of mobility and fitness is vital. Movement usually makes you feel good.
  • Take notice – being aware of the world around us and what we are feeling (some people call this awareness "mindfulness").
  • Give – acts of kindness. Doing something nice for another person, thanking someone, volunteering our time.

 Lynn Bauermeister, Head of Health and Wellbeing at High Life Highland explained: “Mental Health Awareness week is a helpful reminder that taking care of our mental wellbeing is just as important as taking care of our physical health. 

“As the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’ actions show us, there are things that we can all do to support our mental wellbeing, including when things are feeling tough. High Life Highland has a range of activities which can help – from taking part in adult learning or music tuition classes, to volunteering in sports and cultural initiatives, being active in our leisure centres or socialising with people in our huge range of online and face-to-face activities, and much more! 

“Our message is to try to build these actions into daily life, throughout the year –and it may help to consider thinking of the ways to wellbeing like our ‘Five a Day’ for better mental health”.

For more information or for advice and support on improving your mental health please visit Highland Mental Wellbeing Resources

Or for more information on the Five Ways to Wellbeing, the following resources are available:

13 May 2024