Turning to martial arts after spending time in hospital for mental health issues, Harry Stott is showing how the activity can benefit body and mind.
His story was broadcast on ITV Granada Reports on Thursday 16th April.
The 18-year-old from Bury says the discipline gave him a new focus in life and now wants others to give it a go.
‘I love doing martial arts. It’s helped me to be more centred and peaceful within myself. But I didn’t always used to be like this,’ explains Harry.
‘I used to take drugs and go wild. It got more intense and I lost control. I was psychotic and I was admitted to hospital.
‘When I came out of hospital, I knew that I needed to change my life. I felt martial arts would definitely be the right path to go down. I’m training around 11 to 12 hours a week.
‘I don’t drink, I don’t smoke and I don’t do any drugs.
‘I want people to know that if you train martial arts that you can utilise that to help you in any aspect of life.’
With Fixers, Harry is working on a campaign to show how the discipline can benefit people physically and emotionally.
Dr Elliot Cohen, Chartered Psychologist at Leeds Beckett University and black belt martial arts instructor, appears in the broadcast in support of Harry’s campaign.
‘I think there is good evidence to demonstrate a relationship between practising a martial art and having more focus to manage some emotional states with a little bit more creativity,’ says Dr Cohen.
‘Martial arts require discipline, commitment and focus.
‘If you’re willing to put that work in, there will usually be a beneficial effect.’
Harry adds: ‘I want others to see my story as an example that can help them.
‘I want to be positive, inspire people and keep them excited about life.’
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