It is vital people take good care of themselves, and this means focusing on your physical and mental health. The internet provides a range of options for people, but it is good to know there is support on offer in the local area.
One West Hampstead who has provided a lot of support for others in the past year has spoken recently about a recent Community Mental Health event, and how important it is for people to manage all aspects of their life.
Ginny Greenwood MBE is behind Exercise With Me. She has offered Zoom classes in the past year, ensuring people of all ages kept physically and mentally well.
Ginny spoke with the Ham&High, saying; “Looking particularly at the situation we've been in for the last year with the pandemic, there's been a clear rise in mental health issues. Older people have been feeling very isolated, younger people are feeling very isolated. It's been notable how young people are suffering from not being with friends at school, and having their lives turned upside down. So this year, mental health has been on everyone's radar. It's well understood that exercise is good for mental health.”
Workouts come in all shapes and sizes
The main focus of Ginny’s classes are Pilates, but she also adds cardio workouts and weights work. In her own words, the time is best described as a “full body workout based on the principle of balance”.
A lot of people have a fixed notion of what working out is, but this doesn’t have to be the case as Ginny explained further. She said; “Sometimes people think exercise means having to go on a treadmill. It doesn't have to be that. It can be quite simple things, and it's not something people have to be afraid of. Getting out in green spaces is good, and then if you can combine that with perhaps a skipping rope, that can be really beneficial.”
Make the most of your time
As you would expect, Ginny extols the mental health benefits of remaining fit and active. She said; “Endorphins are a bit like a happy pill. And if you do group exercise then there's a feeling of being all in it together. It can help with your metabolism, too - if you're sedentary you're likely to be putting on weight. There's the mental, there's the physical, and then there's helping how you feel about yourself. The mental benefits of just a bit of exercise on a regular basis can't be underestimated.”
Seb Barre is the General Manager of The Laboratory Spa & Health Club (located in Muswell Hill), and he said; “Here at the Laboratory we firmly believe that physical exercise is a vital tool in your mental health armoury, not only giving you countless physical health benefits but also psychological ones.”
Seb also said; “The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness week is nature and it’s positive impact on our mental health and being able to combine exercise with nature is a brilliant way of keeping on top of both your physical and mental wellbeing. We are very lucky to have beautiful gardens at the Muswell Hill club for our members to enjoy but even if you do not have access to somewhere like the Lab, in London we are spoilt with an abundance of beautiful green spaces that are perfect for exercising in. So whether it’s a walk in the park, a jog around the grounds of the palace, some tai chi self-practice or a yoga class in the Lab gardens, remember to take a moment to get active, breathe in your surroundings, and reconnect with nature.”
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