NHS promotes pedalling for health


In support of the upcoming Tour De France, service users at South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust are being encouraged to take to the saddle as part of cycling projects offered to aid recovery. The activities, led by occupational therapists at the Trust, aim to improve motivation, cardiovascular fitness and enhance social interaction with others.

As part of the Trust’s Creative Minds initiative, which promotes innovative approaches to healthcare, occupational therapists at The Dales, an inpatient mental health until in Calderdale, have set up a cycling group. Service users are encouraged to join in with the group to boost their health and wellbeing.

Richard Bates, occupational therapist at The Dales said, “Following feedback from service users myself and staff member Chris Howard trained and successfully completed the Trail Leadership Award with the national cycling organisation CTC. Our award means we’re able to offer cycling to service users – something a lot of people wanted to do.”

At Newhaven, a low secure learning disability unit in Wakefield, service users take part in weekly visits to Anglers Country Park where they cycle round the reservoir. Dave Ogden, head of occupational therapy at Newhaven said, “Getting out on a bike is a great way of increasing health by improving fitness and enhancing wellbeing by being outside socialising with others. The upcoming Tour de France is a great way of encouraging people to give cycling a try.

“Service users really enjoy our weekly cycling activity and we’ve had some good feedback from people involved. We’ve recently had a new member interested in joining the group who’s unable to cycle. So that they can take part, we’ve managed to source a trike which they’ve said is, “brilliant’”.

“This summer’s Tour de France will promote the benefits of cycling to lots of people – and we’ll be encouraging people who use our services to join the cycling group if the event inspires them to have a go.”

To find out more about the Trust and the Creative Minds projects taking place visit the website at www.creativemindsuk.com.

NHS promotes pedalling for health

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