Prince Harry wearing green beret

Harry Helps Launch New Mental Fitness Tool For Armed Forces

The HeadFIT platform, designed for military personnel, includes tools such as breathing exercises, body posture and relaxation techniques.

Prince Harry wearing green beret

The Duke of Sussex has helped launch a new mental fitness tool, aimed at assisting military personnel with their wellbeing.

The HeadFIT project, led by Harry, has been three years in the making.

It has been designed to offer personnel round-the-clock access to ways that can enhance mood, drive and confidence. 

In a video on the platform's website, the former soldier urged members of the Armed Forces to train their "mind and body as one".

“Today, when we talk about fitness, we don’t just mean how fast you can run or how much weight you can carry,” the duke said in the footage.

“This is about mental fitness, strength and resilience, not just while wearing a uniform, but for the rest of your life.

“If you want to be truly fit, strong and healthy, you need to train your mind and body as one. Some people run, others swim, cycle or lift weights in order to be physically fit.

“But what do you do to stay mentally fit? Think about what you can do to unlock your potential, and to perform at the highest level.”

Prince Harry visits Royal Marines in Devon 200219 CREDIT Royal Marines Twitter
The duke's military appointments have been put on hold for the next year, after he stepped away from the Royal family (Picture: Royal Marines/Twitter).

HeadFIT was due to be unveiled in June but its launch was brought forward to help personnel tackle new challenges during the coronavirus pandemic.

It has been made in partnership with The Royal Foundation’s Heads Together campaign, the Ministry of Defence and King’s College London, with clinical advice from psychologist Dr Vanessa Moulton.

The duke, who is living in Los Angeles with the Duchess of Sussex after stepping away from the monarchy, has described the project as a "proactive approach" to mental fitness.

“For too long we [the military community] have been waiting for problems to arise and then reacting to them," he added.

Defence People and Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer also stressed the importance of helping troops with their mental health, particularly during the coronavirus crisis.

“We train our Armed Forces to be both physically fit and mentally fit,” he said.

“And right now mental resilience has never been more important as our defence community works tirelessly to support the UK’s public services during the coronavirus pandemic.”

The HeadFIT platform includes tools such as breathing exercises, body posture and relaxation techniques, the tools ask people to stop, challenge and change their thinking to help their mental health and creative positive habits. 

It was designed for all defence personnel from new recruits, long-serving personnel and veterans to civilian staff and those in uniform.

Cover image: The Duke of Sussex pictured with Royal Marines (Picture: MOD).