What does health have to do with sustainable living?
When we think about sustainable living, we often cast our minds to homes with the latest energy saving features and technologies.
But how often do we consider physical wellbeing and mental health?
Not often enough, it seems. Around 14 million Australians are overweight or obese and 20 per cent of us are suffering from mental health issues.
For Amanda King, CEO of fitness and wellbeing program Live Life Get Active, her mission is to change this.
In many Green Star communities across Australia, the Live Life Get Active scheme has seen the roll out fitness classes in public spaces, offering boxing, yoga and circuit training for free.
“It’s about getting people up and moving and creating positive interaction amongst all demographics and ages. When you we consider communities, we don’t just mean residential; we think corporate, industrial, service, retirement and so on,” says Amanda.
Although, the initiative is about more than just helping Australians hit the recommended daily target of 30 minutes a day for physical exercise.
“Think about a group of people who don’t know each other coming together to get fit, talk about life and share experiences.
“Live Life Get Active has a created a unique environment that makes people feel confident, positive, more driven and able to cope with the stresses of life.”
It seems Amanda could be onto something.
Research suggests that regular exercise can help improve mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety.
When we consider that 45 per cent of Australians will experience some form of mental illness in their lifetime, programs such as Live Life Get Active could be life changing.
Leading an active lifestyle can also reduce the risk of chronic illnesses such as heart disease, which is currently the leading cause of death among Australians.
So what does a Live Life Get Active class entail and who can get involved?
Classes are always held outdoors in green, open spaces and attendees can be aged anywhere from 18 to 84, fostering a sense of community engagement across generations.
“Our average member is a 37 year old mother and she’s powerful person that can change the future,” Amanda says.
“She’s is the influencer of her household and her community.”
In order to offer free classes, Live Life Get Active is supported by funding partners and facilitating councils and locations are continuing to crop up across the country.
You can find free Live Life Get Active classes in the following Green Star rated communities: