Posted: Fri 25th Aug 2023

Fresh step towards men’s mental and physical wellbeing – Flintshire ‘Hike Club’ set for inaugural walk on Sunday

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Aug 25th, 2023


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A filmmaker from Connah’s Quay is hoping his new initiative will help pave the way for men to take both physical and mental strides forward.

The Hike Club, exclusively for men, is set to host its first walk this coming Sunday, focusing not just on exercise and the outdoors, but more crucially, providing a space where men can discuss personal and professional challenges in a confidential environment.

Hike Club is the brainchild of Anthony Hett, 39, who has recently returned to his native Flintshire after 14 years in London.

In response to the perceived lack of spaces where men can freely discuss their issues, Hike Club promises to be an informal environment, set amidst nature, that can hopefully bridge this gap.

When asked about the philosophy of the club, Anthony emphasises: “It’s good to talk.”

He believes that while conversations don’t always offer solutions, they provide relief.

The aim of Hike Club is “you can talk about issues in your private or professional life…safe in the knowledge that it will go no further,” says Anthony.

Not a fan of formal circles where individuals are urged to share, Anthony’s idea promotes an informal atmosphere.

It allows men to feel a rejuvenating connection to nature and to each other.

As a professional open-water swimming coach and filmmaker, Anthony himself feels “a lot better” after being surrounded by the serenity of nature, which complements the emotional well-being and offers an essential respite from the stresses of modern life.

While it’s men-only, Anthony is clear about his reasoning. He wanted to cultivate a place where men could discuss matters without the fear of escalating arguments at home or adding burdens to their families. By talking to others experiencing similar situations, it eases the process.

The reception to the club has been overwhelmingly positive. Anthony admits he had fears of walking alone in the beginning, but the online interest has left him optimistic for Sunday’s turnout.

The future of Hike Club? Anthony says, “I would like its direction to be determined by its members.”

He envisions it as a regular feature in Flintshire men’s calendar, offering a fresh perspective on life and mental health. While currently a solo project, collaborations with local organisations and council funding are on the horizon.

To address the broader issues of men’s mental health, Anthony believes that the simple act of walking, talking, and sharing can work wonders.

Physical activity is not just a tool for physical fitness but is instrumental in mental and emotional rejuvenation.

For those keen to join the inaugural walk of the Hike Club, meet the group at Waun-y-llyn carpark in Caergwrle at 10 am this Sunday, 27 August.

Anyone seeking further information can find it on the official Facebook group ‘Hike Club’ or their Instagram page @hikeclubflintshire.

The only stipulation? It’s men-only, but apart from that, as Anthony affirms, “the more the merrier.”

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