Sports are known to promote emotional resilience, as well as physical fitness and physical endurance, and it turns out that wearing a Team GB shirt or a Nikes pair may be crucial to preventing mental health problems.
A survey of more than 40,000 adults conducted by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and the Office for National Statistics in conjunction with the University of Oxford revealed that sporty boys were less likely to have mental health problems compared to the general population.
There was a clear correlation between being less likely to have mental health problems and being sporty, which found that women and men who were more socially isolated were more likely to have self-reported symptoms of mental illness. Overall, more people were found to have self-reported depression and anxiety disorders, and a separate survey of 3,000 children conducted by the National Childbirth Trust found there was a sixfold increase in the number of children affected by anxiety and depression compared to children of the 1990s.
The increases in mental health issues were mainly attributed to poorer health overall, which led to less contact with family, friends and neighbours and therefore less social support. When it comes to being mentally fit, it seems that a spot of group exercise in the morning and staying active during the day can help ward off depression and anxiety.