Suffolk residents not feeling active enough

by Suffolk Mind Team | 13 May 2024
Suffolk residents not feeling active enough

We’ve found that more than 60% of people in the county say they are not doing enough physical activity and meeting their need for Movement.

Suffolk Mind’s Emotional Needs Audit, which so far has surveyed more than 25,000 people in Suffolk, revealed just 39% of people feel they are feeling they are active enough.

Our CEO Jon Neal said: “We all have 12 physical and emotional needs we need to meet to avoid stress and stay well.

“Movement is an important physical need to fulfil, as it can have a positive effect on other needs, such as Sleep.

“Making sure you are active not only keeps your body fit and healthy, reducing the likelihood of ill health, it can also boost your emotional wellbeing.

“Exercise is a great way of burning off cortisol, the stress hormone, so a little daily exercise can really help relieve tension and anxiety.”

Barriers to moving more

The main barriers to Movement identified by survey respondents are their physical and mental health, followed by their work and financial situation and caring responsibilities.

Respondents who are more active noted that their hobbies and interests, access to nature and their day-to-day environment all help them to be more active.

Jon added: “We can often find it difficult to meet our need for Movement, especially if we have busy lives and responsibilities – or if we see our health as a barrier.

“It can also seem daunting embarking on exercise when you haven’t done so in a while.

“But Movement doesn’t have to be about hitting the gym or running miles a day, it can start with a walk with your family, or some time spent outside gardening.

“Spending five minutes in the fresh air or trying out classes like chair-based Tai Chi are also great, small steps people can take that have a positive effect for those not in a position for more strenuous exercise.

“Getting a little more movement into your life can really make a difference to your emotional and physical wellbeing, as well as feeling like you’re achieving something new.”

Mental health training

The Mental Health Toolkit by Suffolk Mind delivers workplace wellbeing training which helps firms, teams and individuals create long-term cultures, empowering support and wellbeing.

For more information on the workshops and to book, see

by Suffolk Mind Team
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