Proof of sport and mental health link
Proof of sport and mental health link

A landmark two-year study has reinforced the link between regular physical activity and better mental wellbeing.

Mind launched the Get Set to Go programme – the largest of its kind anywhere in the world – in July 2015 with support from Sport England and the National Lottery.

It has helped more than 3,500 people with mental health problems to get more active, with 78% rating the programme as very good or excellent.

Get Set to Go gave people support from peers who understood the barriers to being active that mental health problems can pose.

Those taking part increased their activity levels by an average of 1.3 days per week. They also said it improved their resilience and ability to cope.

Activities included gym, football, badminton, boxing, walking, boccia and ultimate frisbee.

Sujan, who joined her local running group as part of Get Set to Go, says: “Jolly Joggers is great because it motivates you to keep going jogging, even in winter.”

“It’s helped with my panic and anxiety attacks and I feel much better and more confident in myself.”

The programme, which ran at eight local minds, was independently evaluated by Loughborough University and the University of Nottingham.

Mind is now asking sport and activity organisations to use its recommendations.