BENDIGO trainers are getting behind a new program aimed at helping men battle depression.
The program, which is being run in conjunction with beyondblue, will see men who are battling depression get active in the gym with other men.
Director of the Human Mechanics, Arj Perera said the idea was to create an area where men could catch up and network.
"I've had a few clients go through depression and they go to support groups, which is good, but a vast majority of men don’t like to talk about 'girly things'," Mr Perera said.
"The idea is for guys to get together without it being a discussion group.
"I want to change the stigma (of talking about depression) and let guys have another way to network.
"So instead of brooding on their own, they see 20 other guys twice a week and can catch up with them for a beer."
People who get involved can do two sessions a week and will pay what they think is reasonable for each session, starting from $10.
Mr Perera said the trainer's time was donated and that the money raised from the sessions would be donated to beyondblue.
"I had a friend of mine take their life and it rocked myself and the school community," Mr Perera said.
"You think about what you can do to help out. You offer support but it's good to try and prevent (depression)."
As well as the Human Mechanics, Punches in Bunches, CrossFit Dauntless, CrossFit By Design, Just FDI Bootcamps and Shape Health and Fitness are also taking part.
Melbourne gyms taking part include Pivotal Health and Fitness in HUghesdale, Narre Warren Bootcamps, Elite Strength Performance in Prahan and Alter Ego Personal Training in Alphington.
Beyondblue CEO Kate Carnell said new program was a fantastic idea.
“Research shows men are less likely to talk about mental health or to seek support when they need it," she said.
"It’s fantastic that these group exercise classes will provide men with a casual environment in which they can feel comfortable sharing these concerns and issues.
"Keeping physically active is also an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which can help people stay mentally healthy.”
For more information log on to www.humanmechanics.com.au/smb
If you or someone you know needs help phone Lifeline on 13 11 14 or beyondblue on 1300 224 636.