Thursday, June 13, 2024

Fitness community in Barry helps parents’ mental health: Lloydy’s story

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Mark Lloyd (known as Lloydy), 49, and parent of two, runs a group training fitness business called Brawd in Barry, Vale of Glamorgan. He started Brawd in 2013, leaving behind his job at a multi-national company. What started as a bootcamp soon turned into a permanent community fixture on Barry Island Beach, with fitness training that emphasises fun and camaraderie.

“I was working in a big multi-national and had broken my ankle on a stand up paddle boarding accident. Whilst I was lying there, in bed, feeling sorry for myself, an opportunity came up to run a bootcamp. I knew that it would work in the area I live in, so I went in and that was how we started in 2013”.

The challenges of parenting can put people under increased pressure that can lead to feelings of anxiety and overwhelm.  If not supported this could develop into more significant mental health problems. Mark is a parent of two children, 13 and 8 years old.  

“I always found training helpful to me, if I didn’t exercise a few times a week my mental health would dip a bit. I think now, it’s more important than ever because I’m a parent, I own Brawd,  I’m very, very busy. It’s sometimes overwhelming and you get stuck in your head, and I think movement and exercise is so important. 

“Movement is probably the number one thing you can do to improve or change your state, people come into the gym feeling exhausted and low. And everyone leaves feeling better.  You move, you change your state – the biggest influence you can have on your mental state is to move, you can walk, you can swim, you can do a gym, come to Brawd, do anything!”  

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