Aussie-Fit brings free, footy-themed men's program to Bunbury

An Aussie-Fit group.
An Aussie-Fit group.

"It's a program that brings guys together in a relaxed environment, so they can benefit from social interaction and improve their health."

Michael McDonald

A NEW sports program will soon begin in Bunbury with the aim of supporting men's physical and mental health through playing footy.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 71 per cent of Australian men aged 18 years and over are overweight or obese, due to a variety of factors including smoking, alcohol consumption, diet and exercise.

Aussie-Fit Bunbury will begin in March and run for 12 weeks for men aged 35 to 65.

Coordinator Matthew McDonald said the program was based on a similar one run in the United Kingdom, which encouraged football fans to take on training.

"The regional Aussie-Fit program is slightly different in that it's for men who might not have been active for a while, or maybe used to play footy and no longer play," McDonald said.

"It's a program that will support guys to become a bit more active and improve their diets also.

"Each session is 90 minutes long and will cover a mix of education and sport components - such as goal setting and physical activity."

The program is part of McDonald's PhD at Curtin University which is focused on men's health.

Originally from Scotland, McDonald said he had always been involved in working in men's health.

"I'm quite passionate about sports and the value I get from being around the guys doing this program is huge.

"The benefit I get isn't just from an active perspective - but mental health as well.

"The program doesn't specifically target mental health in that there's no session on it - but it's a big part of the concept."

Interested in joining the free program?

Email aussiefit@curtin.edu.au to find out more, or register online at www.aussiefit.org.