PUPILS gearing up for exams are being encouraged to clear their heads and improve their mental well-being by going out for a run.

To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, running enthusiasts from the Tyne Valley have teamed up with Queen Elizabeth High School, in Hexham, to join in with the national #RunandRevise initiative.

The scheme was instigated by mental health charity Mind and the England Athletics RunTogether campaign to encourage young people between the ages of 16 and 25 to take a break from revising by getting outside and running, or walking, after 80 per cent of young people said exam pressure had significantly impacted on their mental health.

Members of Tyne Green parkrun and athletics club Tynedale Harriers have worked with the high school to create a Run, Student, Run group, and the weekly parkrun event will be a one-off Run and Revise run.

Claire Knowles, the Tyne Green parkrun co-event director and run leader, said: “The great thing about parkrun is it’s free, and for everybody. There’s no pressure to run the whole course, or run at all.

“It is about having fun, getting outside, meeting people and being active.

“As someone who got into running later in life, I know first-hand how much running has helped my own mental health and I would encourage all students to come down experience parkrun.”

James Andriot, head of school at QEHS, said: “This is a great community initiative designed to help our young people during an intense period of external exams.

“The school recognises the importance of exercise to support a healthy lifestyle, both physically and mentally.

“I really hope that as many students as possible get involved and see the longer term benefits.”

Parent Tony Brown, who is also a trustee of the Hadrian Learning Trust which runs the high school, said: “I hope students will carry on with the initiative, at a level that suits them, as they work through exams and beyond.”