Reducing anxiety through exercise

Person tying up shoe laces

Mental Health Awareness Week 2023 is just around the corner, and Bracknell Forest Council is calling on residents to prioritise their mental health by exercising.

This year's theme is ‘anxiety’ and exercise has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health, by reducing stress, anxiety and depression.

The council and its partners have a host of activities for residents to take part in during Mental Health Awareness Week to encourage residents to get moving, including:

  • Walks for Wellbeing - hosted by Sustrans
  • free or discounted access to Bracknell Leisure centre (eligibility criteria applies)
  • free Tai Chi classes
  • free seated exercise and catch up with the Happiness Hub

Residents are encouraged to take advantage of these offers or find an activity that they enjoy, whether it's yoga, running, or swimming. At least 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day has been shown to have the most significant impact on mental health.

Heema Shukla, deputy director for public health at Bracknell Forest Council, said:

"Mental Health Awareness Week is the perfect opportunity to make the positive change towards a healthier lifestyle and prioritising your mental wellbeing.

“We are very lucky to have an array of free activities for all abilities to enjoy. There is no competition here, it’s all about turning up, taking part and most importantly having fun.”


Monday 15 May

  • understanding anxiety at Stepping Stones, The Court House, RG12 1AE
    • 10am to midday
  • free Tai Chi class at Bracknell Library
    • 2.30pm

Tuesday 16 May

Wednesday 17 May

  • Happiness Hub on the NHS bus – Bond Square, The Lexicon
    • 11am to 3pm
  • Happiness Hub – free Tai Chi, Bond Square, The Lexicon
    • 11am to 3pm

Thursday 18 May

  • Happiness Hub social meet up at Shopmobility in Princess Square
    • 12.30 to  2.30pm
  • free Tai Chi class at Time Square, Bracknell
    • 3pm

Friday 19 May

  • Health walk at Sandhurst Memorial Park
    • 9.30am
  • Happiness Hub social meet at Crowthorne Fire Station
    • 11am to 1pm

More information

If you or someone you know is struggling with their mental health, get advice from our public health portal.