Sheffield Runner asking GPs for more support towards people with mental illness

20 February 2020

A man from Sheffield is working with GPs to design a running program with the aim to incorporate exercise to improve mental health. 

James Norton, 42, had personally experienced depression and anxiety but has said he had benefited greatly when he had started running five years ago.

He said: “The issue we realize about what it really works is if you can get that person one and one, so where we are at the moment, we are trying to communicate with GPs. Our ability to help people is so limited so it will be nice if we work close to the GPs.

“We can help somebody with mild anxiety and improve wellbeing but if we got people presenting more complex issues, it’s essential that we work with GPs.”

Participants of the programme have expressed their excitement and surprise over their achievements after completing a 10 week C25K course.

Emma Hudson, a participant of the course said: “The first time I attended the C25K course, I was equally nervous and had some anxiety. I was hooked after the first session.

“I had not only done something to benefit my physical health (and give me the best night’s sleep I’ve had in a long time) but also gave me a sense of achievement and being proud of myself which helped my mental health enormously.”

Neomi Hinch, 41, of Norton Lees Road, said: “I come along with my friends but I also make so many new friends here. 

“When the weather is bad, it’s difficult to make yourself come out, but it’s easier when you’re knowing you’re going to meet people. Everyone is really friendly and encouraging.”

Each C25K session is accompanied by theory workshops held in pub sessions at the end of each training course. It is a chance for participants to share their experiences as well as to build friendships and support networks.

See more here or email James:


Written by Wenxuan Fan

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