NHS Trust says banish the blues with tai chi


A series of tai chi sessions are taking place in Hebden Bridge on Saturday 10th October, World Mental Health Day, as part of the South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust’s Festival of Wellbeing.

In partnership with NHS Calderdale’s ‘Get Moving Week’ people are being invited to attend the taster sessions at Hope Baptist Church, Hebden Bridge, between 10am and 3pm to try out a new activity and boost mental wellbeing. The workshops are free of charge and are open to everyone, but it is hoped people with and without experience of mental health problems will attend and together help address stigma of mental health and take action to boost their mental wellbeing.

Sarah Clarke, Health Improvement Specialist for Mental Health at NHS Calderdale said, "We would just like people to come along and give it a try. Exercise has been proven to increase your energy levels, reduce stress, feelings of depression and anxiety, boost your mood and it is a great way to overcome any negative emotions you are feeling.

"Some studies have shown that it can have the same antidepressant affect as psychotherapy or group therapy and more and more doctors are being encouraged to prescribe an exercise programme as part of a treatment plan for depression."

The sessions are part of an 18 day festival being held across Calderdale, Kirklees or Wakefield, designed to mark world mental health day 2009. Over 150 events and activities are being held on the themes of ‘Get moving, get creative and get involved’.

The tai chi is part of the festival’s ‘get moving’ theme as physical activity is great for mental wellbeing. The Trust’s chief executive, Steven Michael, said: “This is an ideal opportunity to raise awareness of mental health issues, reduce stigma and promote wellbeing. We know that creativity, physical activity and social inclusion all make a big difference to wellbeing so our festival is concentrating on these areas. We want people in our local communities to be able to try something new to enhance their wellbeing.” To book a place at one of the sessions please call Julie Sheppard on 07521 430174 or email Kate Howarth at choice@CVAC.org.uk

For more information about the Festival of Wellbeing and to see the full list of events taking place, visit www.southwestyorkshire.nhs.uk

NHS Trust says banish the blues with tai chi

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