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£400,000 for Exercise Projects in 32 Boroughs including Enfield, Barnet and Hackney


In the recent edition of the Enfield and Haringey Independent, December 11th 2019, reporters advised readers that there would be a £400,000 boost for exercise projects in the local area. Transport for London (TfL) recently announced that they would be funding new grants for local communities; and, in fact, 60 community groups will receive money in order to get people more active. There will be a new scheme for local cyclists in the Enfield area. This project is called the ‘Swift Riders Cycling Club’. Children in the local area will be taught how to ride bikes safely and conscientiously. David Kraft, a local psychotherapist, said that this move would be extremely helpful for people in the local area and would, inevitably, have an effect of reducing anxiety and increasing confidence levels for local residents taking part’. The Muslim Education Community Centre will also be involved in getting people riding bikes; generously, they are funding new tandem bikes for the blind so that they can ride with a partner. The blind often feel isolated and spent long periods inside: this will help them to enjoy nature in the Enfield area and exercising at the same time. And, in addition, there is another cycling venture, ‘Stars ‘N’ Stripes’, which has been set up in Hackney: this group is running cycling courses for children aged 2 and over. If you are interesting in walking, Fusion Lifestyle leisure centres, in several locations, will be offering graded walks for all fitness levels. There are also cycling and walks organised for parents; and there is a buddy scheme for wheelchair users, and some centres have modified bikes so that they can be used by people in wheelchairs.

Exercise is important for wellbeing. During and after exercise, the brain releases endorphins which have an effect on mood, energy levels and sleep; and, this, in combination, can have a positive effect on confidence and resilience. This, in turn, has a knock-on effect on mood: people who exercise are less likely to develop depression or other mood disorders. Doing regular exercise means that you will be unlikely to put on weight, and it reduces the risk of developing cancer and diabetes. Most people who come to see me for depression or anxiety problems are not doing regular exercise; and so, it is a question that I often ask people when they come for counselling or psychotherapy. The psychotherapeutic approach that I take is holistic: I never work in a vacuum and I am also thinking about my clients’ well being as a whole—their home life, relationships, the work setting, their ability to be creative or to express themselves. Exercise is another aspect of that needs to be addressed in the consulting room. If you would like to see me for psychotherapy or counselling, please ring me for an assessment on 07946 57945.

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David Kraft PhD

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