Backwell students involved in running project to learn about mental health

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner Ben Smith. - Credit: Archant

A group of year seven students who have completed a running project met a North Somerset man who once did 401 marathons in 401 days.

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner Ben Smith. - Credit: Archant

Ben Smith, who finished the inspiring challenge in 2016, visited Backwell School.

The year seven students have been taking part in the RunWell scheme, which aims to educate students about the benefits running, and exercise in general, can have for mental health.

Every pupil has completed a six-week programme of three runs per week, progressing from running for a minute to 20 minutes.

As an increasing number of young people struggle with mental health issues while they try to deal with social and academic pressures, the school has been providing tools and ideas for dealing with stress.

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner Ben Smith. - Credit: Archant


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Ben Smith, who lives in Portishead, runs the 401 Foundation which aims to tackle mental health issues and spoke to the pupils about the benefits of running.

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner

Backwell School, Year 7 students working on a running and mental health programme meeting 401 runner Ben Smith. - Credit: Archant

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