WCPT Press release: Physical therapy can help improve mental health



WCPT Press release

30th August 2018

For immediate release


Physical therapy can help improve mental health


Physical activity is good for the body but it can also help improve mental health and wellbeing. Get active, stay active is the key message from physical therapists for this year’s World Physical Therapy Day on 8 September 2018.

Did you know? 

  • 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health issue of some sort during their lifetime
  • 1 in 6 people are likely to have had mental health issues in the past seven days 
  • people with mental health issues are more at risk of having poor physical health 
  • 70% of premature deaths in people with mental health issues are due to poor physical health
  • mental health issues are one of the main causes of the overall disease burden worldwide. 

Exercise is an evidence-based treatment for people with mental health issues, and physical therapists work with people who may have mental health issues alongside other long-term health issues. 

WCPT President Emma K Stokes said: ‘We all know how important physical activity and exercise is for our physical health – our fitness, flexibility, balance and strength. But being physically active can also help manage and improve our mental health and wellbeing. 

‘If you’re feeling anxious or low it can be difficult to think about getting or staying active but a physical therapist can work with you to suggest activities or a programme that’s right for you. They can make sure the targets you set are realistic and achievable, and they’ll help keep you motivated and adapt your activities or programme as you progress.

‘Getting and staying physically active will help improve both physical and mental health. Talk to a physical therapist and discover an exercise or activity you find enjoyable and have fun! That’s what World Physical Therapy Day is all about.’

Every year individual physical therapists and WCPT member organisations celebrate their contribution to global health on World Physical Therapy Day, organising events and using the #worldptday hashtag to share stories and experiences across the world. 

World Physical Therapy Day is aligned with a World Health Organization (WHO) action plan. The World Health Organization has two classifications for physical activity: moderate, such as brisk walking or cycling, and vigorous, such as running or fast swimming. 

Contact       Mia Lockner on mlockner@wcpt.org
Twitter        @WCPT1951    
Facebook   @WCPT1951
Website       https://www.wcpt.org/

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