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Academic working with Frank Bruno in mental health charity

Monday 31 July 2017

A SALFORD academic is working with former world champion boxer Frank Bruno on a campaign to improve people’s mental health through a non-contact version of the sport.

Steve Myers, Director of Society at the University of Salford’s School of Health and Society, has been appointed as Chair of the Frank Bruno Foundation after the legendary British heavyweight visited the University’s Mary Seacole Building for a board meeting.

Steve, a qualified social worker who has worked with young people experiencing emotional and behavioural challenges, was approached by the charity because of his expertise in organising schemes to help people with mental health problems.

The foundation aims to provide a combination of group counselling sessions with structured non-contact boxing training sessions to relieve the emotional and mental distress that affects the mental health of children, young people and adults.

These training sessions, which will include hitting pads, shadow boxing and performing shuttle runs, reduce stress levels while increasing cardiovascular fitness, stamina and hand-eye coordination.

The foundation was set up by the former WBC heavyweight boxing champion earlier this year following his own highly-publicised battles with mental health issues.

Steve said: “We are aiming to bring together the benefits of non-contact boxing with a solution focused well-being programme to help people to develop a healthier body and a healthier mind, building on their existing physical and emotional strengths and achievements.

“Our aspiration is that people will use the skills they learn on the programme to develop a happier, more fulfilling and successful future. We are looking forward to developing our partnership between The Frank Bruno Foundation, the School of Health and Society and the wider university to help fight back against the stigma of mental ill-health.”