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FEATHERSTONE ROVERS FOUNDATION’s second round of the their Back Onside programme is well underway and last week saw its focus on physical activity accompanied by a discussion on mental health. The programme, funded by Sport England in partnership with Rugby League Cares, tackles inactivity in men aged 35-64 at rugby league Foundations across the country.

Fitness classes, lead by Rovers first team player Jack Bussey, are partnered with support in promoting long-term behavioural change to lead healthier and more active lifestyles.

Last week’s fixture theme was on one of the biggest issues facing men today, as in the UK suicide is the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45.

Community Development Officer Jim Dyson said: “The programme’s not just about physical health, its about improving quality of life and mental health is a big part of that.

“Male depression and mental health are something that often gets overlooked, but when you look at the statistics it's very worrying that we don’t do more.

“Part of the problem is that men don’t talk about this kind of thing and having suffered with anxiety and depression myself, I felt that It was important we address this issue.”

“We sat the guys down in a group with a brew and we talked about our experiences, with me and Jack opening up first.

“The rest of the guys started to share their experiences, offering advice on how we have each tried to overcome this.

”Following this, we went in the Centre of Excellence training facility at the home of the Rovers and played a couple of games for the guys to let off steam”.

The group discussed the importance of opening up, giving contact details to people who are trained to help, as well as looking at ways to improve mental health through diet, physical activity and socialising. 

For more information please contact Jim Dyson by clicking Here

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