MOVE for Mental Health

June 27, 2018| Health and Wellbeing /

Research has shown regular physical activity has a positive influence on sleep, mood, relationships and other lifestyle-related changes, however, with 1 in 4 Australian's diagnosed with a mental illness the level of sedentary behaviour in this population group is startling.

Ismini Dandanis is an exercise physiologist at Epworth Clinic and has been a champion in developing the exercise components across many of our mental health programs.

"It is so important to promote the role of exercise as a form of therapy for people with mental health conditions," Ismini said. "This is why I am thrilled that Epworth Clinic now offers a MOVE program for inpatients."

Mindful movement, intuitive eating is the meaning behind the MOVE program, which has already been running for a year as a 12-week outpatient day program.

Now, the program is offered to inpatients at Epworth Clinic who can access the rehabilitation gym twice a week and attend group or individual coaching under the guidance of a broad allied health team.

 Ismini guiding a patient through an exercise program.

Ismini guiding a patient through an exercise program.

"The interdisciplinary model of care applied across the division, including within Epworth Clinic, means participants are guided through the MOVE program by psychiatrists, exercise physiologists, dietitians and other allied health team members who provide education and support around exercise and nutrition to help make long term, positive behavioural and lifestyle changes," Ismini said.

The program is tailored to individual health and individual wellness goals in the aim to plan for their discharge and ongoing recovery.

Group therapy sessions and individual coaching help participants to better understand how mental health symptoms and thought processes can contribute to difficulties in maintaining these lifestyle changes and guided gym sessions help provide people with the tools to maintain physical activity.

I love being able to make a difference to a patient’s health and wellbeing, particularly in the area of mental health. This inpatient program is a huge step for Epworth Clinic and a fantastic outcome for our patients that is a direct result of the unique connection we have with Epworth Rehabilitation.
— Ismini Dandanis, Exercise Physiologist, Epworth HealthCare


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