We do this through running exercise programs that empower people to better manage their mental health, and getting more General Practitioner’s & Psychologists prescribing exercise as treatment for depression/anxiety.
In 2012, then psychology researcher Isabelle Granville-Smith and tennis coach Cameron Wilson met at Sydney’s Black Dog Institute, as advocates for the role exercise plays in boosting mental health. They launched a program intended to:
In July 2013, Cam ran the program’s very first Cardio Tennis class at Eastcourts Tennis in Kingsford, and Isabelle the first Fitness Circuit in Centennial Park. Mood Active was born.
Since the program’s beginning, Tania Curley (who has held roles including General Manager 2017-2021) and Cameron, have utilised their combined skills in coaching psychology, business, and communications, as well as decades of lived experience using exercise to boost mental health.
Our Committee members all generously volunteer their time to help out with particular skills and lots of enthusiasm.
Sarah, our Secretary, is a professional risk manager with a love of sport and adventure. She also spent a few years as a personal trainer and has a degree in Physiology. Sarah knows the value exercise makes to her mental health and is passionate about bringing it to others. Her love of adventure has taken her on expeditions down the Nile and Murray Rivers. Sarah joined Mood Active as the organisation Secretary in May 2020.
Craig, our President, rejoined the committee in July 2022 having previously served as Vice President for several years pre-COVID, also undertaking several operational roles during that time. He is a business and technology consultant with qualifications in Law, Business, Technology and Psychology. Craig is a keen ocean swimmer, cyclist and walker with significant mental health lived experience as a parent/carer.
Carpe diem! (seize the day).
Lana is a registered psychologist with a background in Sport and Performance Psychology. With over 20 years of experience, Lana has worked as a psychologist for elite sporting groups providing facilitation, training and individual support to organisations including Cricket NSW, Basketball Australia and the Australian Tenpin Bowling team.
She joined Mood Active in December 2020 and is involved in strategy setting and providing supervision for our coaches
Dr Susannah Ward is a Physician of Rehabilitation Medicine working in the Newcastle/Lake Macquarie region. She has degrees in medical science with honours and medicine and surgery with honours and specialised in rehabilitation medicine with the fellowship Basmajian Prize in 2018. She has a special interest in wellbeing and lifestyle health and has telehealth clinics and clinics at Atune Health Centre Cardiff and The Wellness Place Blacksmiths. She is passionate about holistic health and believes wellness to be available for all people despite living with disease, disability stress and adversity.
She was a director of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians 2016-2018 and member of The Australian Institute of Company Directors and completed the AICD intensive Director Training course in 2017. She is a member of the RACP, AMA, RMSANZ, DEA and ICDA.
Besides being our Head Trainer, Cam served as Committee President for several years. He brings lived experience to his current Committee role, as Consumer Advocate.
Cam has battled bipolar depression since his late teens, and has long relied on exercise to maintain his own mental health.
Cam is a (Tennis Australia) certified Cardio Tennis coach, and an internationally published freelance journalist. He holds a BA in Communications.
In recent years (2012 & 2020), Cam has also endured two brain tumour surgeries, a brain-stem stroke, re-learned how to walk and talk, and now has a permanently paralysed face. But he's back on court, running cardio tennis classes - we're starting to think he could be hit with a cricket bat and still be the last man standing....
Naomi has been active her whole life, participating in physical culture, gymnastics, athletics, yoga, altitude training and weight lifting. She joined Mood Active in 2018 as a Group Fitness Trainer and in 2021 became the Program Manager. Naomi loves the sense of achievement physical activity can bring and has personally used exercise as treatment for anxiety. She wishes to share this coping strategy with others and motivate people to discover just how good they can feel.
Naomi’s background is in Administration and Customer Service in the Not-For-Profit space. She holds a Cert IV in Fitness and Bachelor of Media (PR & Advertising) from UNSW.
Julia has worked in strategic development and executive leadership across a range of industries, including Healthcare, Welfare and Social Services, Aviation, Financial Services, Government and IT & Telecommunications sectors in Australia, Asia, the UK and Europe and the USA. For nearly a decade, she has worked solely in the not-for-profit sector, bringing her skills and experience in leadership, growth and commercial acumen to worthy causes in Australia and the Pacific Region.
As well as holding management roles in this sector, she has served on the boards of Medibank Private, Jarrah House and GIGL Australia. Prior to the COVID crisis, she was the General Manager of Pillars of Strength, a charity delivering support for bereaved fathers.
Mood Active's operations are made possible with the invaluable contribution of our volunteers, who have a diverse range of skills that they apply to Mood Active, as trainers, coaches, event organisers, and the vital behind the scenes work. We are incredibly grateful for their kind support.
Rajiv has a Master’s degree in Computer Applications and comes from an IT background specializing in delivering digital/online initiatives & IT transitions/transformation programs. He brings his experience in Program Management, Governance and views technology as an enabler that supports and contributes to Mood Active’s strategic goals. Having experienced physical and mental benefits of exercise, Rajiv relates to Mood Active’s vision and wants to spread the message around to guide other people.
Alexandra began her journey in the events industry with the not-for-profit industry 5 years ago and has since been working to assist organisations to meet their goals for their industry through educational and inspiring events. Alexandra received the 20 in their twenties award in 2020 from the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA), which recognised the growth and leadership skills evident in the event teams Alexandra has led.
Alexandra has a Bachelor of Arts and Masters in Policing, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism from Macquarie University; and before pursuing this field Alexandra fell in love with the events sector.
When not creating events, Alexandra can often be found with a book or pen in her hand, indulging her passion in literature.
Kelsey is a marketing professional with a passion for all things social media. Keen to normalise discussions around mental health, she believes that exercise is a key part of wellness that can completely change your mood. Kelsey is excited to be a part of the team to promote Mood Active’s programs and support those who strive for physical and mental wellness.
Having grown up playing a wide range of sports, staying active has always been important to Josef. Josef moved to Australia from New Zealand at 17 to pursue his sporting and academic aspirations. Currently he is in the final semester of an undergraduate commerce degree at The University of Sydney majoring in Accounting and Finance. Away from studies Josef plays water polo for the Sydney University Lions mens team and works part time at an accounting firm in the city. A goal of Josef’s has always been to find a job where he can apply the skills he has learnt to a cause he cares about. Josef is very excited to do his part in helping MoodActive get people back on their feet.
Loui is New Zealand born and raised but moved to Sydney to further develop his sporting and studies. He is currently studying for a Bachelor of Economics degree majoring in Economics and Accounting at the University of Sydney and has had experience in accounts payable and office management work. Alongside his studies, he is in the Elite Athlete Programme for Water Polo, playing for the Sydney Uni Lions. Loui’s passion for all things sports & fitness and his love of helping people is what‘s drawn him to assisting Mood Active in carrying out their mission.
Many of our trainers generously volunteer their services at Mood Active.
Allina has practiced yoga for over 10 years, and her daily yoga practice has helped her manage stress in daily life.
To deepen her practice, Allina was called towards undertaking yoga teacher training at Samasti Yoga school in Bali in 2019. This was a transformational experience that has shifted her perspective, both on and off the mat. Since then, breathwork and meditation have become bigger parts of her practice, and has completed Vedic meditation training in Sydney.
Allina seeks to connect breath and movement in her practice to have a ‘moving meditation’ experience, helping to bring a sense of increased calm and focus.
Danny Healy has bachelor of science in psychology from UNSW.
He was the fitness director for Wellspring Texas (2007) and has worked as a personal trainer and bootcamp instructor for many years.
He loves that exercise acts as a reset button for the brain; something his friends say he needs more often, to which Danny fully agrees!
Orly is an accomplished Yoga, Pilates teacher, Personal Trainer through the American Council of Exercise, and an Aqua Fitness specialist through Aquatic Exercise Association with over 20 years experience in America. She relocated to Sydney, Australia with her Australian husband and 2 children ages 13 and 11 just recently in January of 2022. She is delighted to be apart of the Mood Active Team building community and wellness. One of Orly’s highlights is teaching yoga live to over 500 people in the famous Bryant Park of New York, as well as being featured as a teacher and contributing writer for both Shape and Women’s Health.
Jade initially turned to yoga as a way to switch off from her busy life and hasn’t looked back since. She loves that yoga is a low impact form of exercise which will still stretch and strengthen the body.
Jade has been teaching yoga at Mood Active since July 2019 and also assists with Mood Active’s marketing and writes exercise posts for the blog.
Mood Active’s sole purpose is to improve the mental health and well being of more Australian adults by ensuring that supervised supportive exercise programs are accessible and affordable to all.
We rely on the generous support of volunteers and donations, and are incredibly grateful to those who have provided their support and continue to do so on an ongoing basis.
We have deductible gift recipient status, which means your donations are tax deductible. Please keep a copy of your payment receipt for your records.
Cardio Tennis is where we started over 10 years ago.
Now we provide many ways for people to learn to exercise. We are looking for sponsors to help us build our capacity to deliver to more people who are suffering with mood disorders including depression, anxiety, bi-polar and other illnesses.
Mood Active is an organisation dedicated to enabling people to build exercise into their own mental health wellbeing routine.
We want to see more GPs and other clinicians, prescribing exercise to combat mood disorders!
We do this through supporting people on their journey to better mental health - starting with our 4WWW program.
Our programmes are built to be sustainable. As we expand, we are looking to partner with organisations that can help us grow and continue to help people with mental illness and other mood disorders across Australia in clinically proven ways that work for them.
Mood Active has partnered with Councils (City of Sydney, Randwick, Parramatta), Corporates (Jones Lang Lasalle), State Government (NSW Government) and Not-For-Profits (Stride, CASS). We can also work with family and/or friendship groups.
Our programs are based on research which shows that supervised, moderate to intense exercise for 150 minutes a week for 8-12 weeks can assist to alleviate the symptoms of mild to moderate mood disorders.
Our signature 4WWW has been co-designed by a Psychologist and Masters of Coaching graduate. Our programs can be tailored to suit small and large groups in both face-to-face and virtual settings. Over 70% of participants report an increase in both mood and physical activity levels upon completing our programs.
We need support for to deliver our 4WWW program to vulnerable people
We are looking for sponsorship partners who can help fund
Your involvement would demonstrate your support for this unique and much-needed cause. Sponsorship could provide the following opportunities:
In-house exercise programs
Our programs are suitable for anyone - and we have already tailored the 4WWW to work in a company setting for employees and managers to improve their mood - especially given the huge disruption to work practices driven by COVID-19 and the new approach to hybrid work that is sweeping the nation.
We can offer the option of running the 4WWW for your employees at a rate that will also subsidise our program for vulnerable Australians
We can offer tiered sponsorship arrangements depending on the level of support ranging from:
You can join on the website here. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us via the button at the bottom of each page or phone our Operations Manager on 0412 190 842; our referral procedure is informal, although it does help us to know of your referrer (GP, psychiatrist, psychologist, community mental health centre etc) if any.
membership and the 4WWW are free as they are subsidised by our sponsors and partners. the supported exercise classes attract a small fee, generally $5.00, payable at the time of booking. Don't worry, if you have to cancel we can generally refund your fees anyway (as long as you don't leave it to the last minute).
We use the DASS (Depression, Anxiety & Stress Scales) and RDQ (Remission from Depression Questionnaire) and a depression symptom checklist to assess mood functionality of each participant when you join.
Yes. We normally require that you undertake the free 4WWW course prior to attending supported exercise classes, but if this is not possible for you, please contact us to discuss your specific needs. We will try at all times to help.
Yes, our Casual classes are designed to help you keep up your exercise routine. We do, however, encourage you to improve your confidence to the point where you can access the much wider range of exercise classes provided by community gyms such as PCYC or commercial gyms in your local area. If you can do this, then you can give yourself a pat on the back. If this takes a while (or you never get there), we will always welcome you at Mood Active classes.
Yes. Whether yoga, circuit fitness, cardio tennis, or any of our classes, all our trainers are fully accredited, insured and First Aid certified. We require all our trainers to be vaccinated for COVID-19, including keeping up-to-date with boosters.
No, we run group exercise classes. All our trainers and committee members do however have an interest in and commitment to exercise as an invaluable therapy option for treating depression and other mood disorders.
No formal referral letter is required. You can either call or text our Operations Manager on 0412 190 842 or use the contact form to pass on your client's details and our Operations Manager will get in touch with them. Your client can also contact us directly.
We work with people suffering from a range of mood disorders: depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, post-natal depression and PTSD. The program is not suitable for patients suffering acute psychosis and/or at immediate risk of self-harm.
Our trainers have experience helping people who are struggling with depression/anxiety, and have access to advice and guidance from a clinical psychologist. If you would like us to stay in contact with you regarding your client’s progress we are happy to do so.
Mood Active is an incorporated association and is also registered with the Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission (ACNC). ABN: 89 374 919 389
The committee is currently made up of five people with expertise in group exercise, psychology research, media & communications, events and finance. The day to day management of Mood Active is undertaken by the General Manager, accountable to the Committee.
Yes. Information on all our participant assessment forms is protected by our constitution and we have procedures to ensure its confidentiality. We will only follow-up with your referring GP or psychologist/counsellor if you are happy for us to do so.
No, however, our programs and classes are eligible for NDIS funding from your plan. If you have any queries on this matter, please consult your plan manager.
Grants, program contributions from participants; donations/sponsorship (private & corporate); our own fund-raising events.
You can help us to keep Mood Active classes going by making a donation via PayPal - see the tab on the right hand side of the page - and keep your tax deductible receipt!
Yes. Mood Active is endorsed by the ATO for Deductible Gift Recipient Status (DGR).
Yes. Cert no. CFN 23385.
Yes. Our financial reports are audited annually by Sea Change Accounting.
Yes. We have transparent authorisation procedures in place for all expenses and payments.
Yes. Public liability & professional indemnity insurance. Lloyds Policy no. GL2372 and AL0063.