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Anxiety in teens is rising: what’s going on?




By Tommy Flaherty from Activate Fitness

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), nearly 1 in 3 of all adolescents ages 13 to 18 will experience an anxiety disorder.

These numbers have been rising steadily; since 2012, anxiety disorders in children and teens went up 20%.

What is anxiety?

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness. They are characterised by intense and prolonged feelings of fear, distress, excessive worry, preoccupation, obsessive thoughts, and apprehension. In addition to mental symptoms, those who experience anxiety disorders also exhibit physical symptoms, such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, rapid breathing and heartbeat, and myocardial ischemia. Anxiety disorders can be classified into sub-groups such as general anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, panic disorder, and social anxiety disorder.

Be aware of the signs of anxiety. Sometimes children may say that they are anxious, but other times it is less clear - especially as they may not even realise it themselves.

Signs can include:

• recurring fears and worries about routine parts of every day life
• changes in behaviour, such as irritability
• avoiding activities, school, or social interactions
• dropping grades or school avoidance
• trouble sleeping or concentrating
• chronic physical complaints, such as fatigue, headaches, or stomach aches.

Inactivity and increased sitting time are associated with numerous diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and metabolic syndrome. Individuals who are affected by an anxiety disorder tend to have large amounts of sedentary time and fail to meet exercise guidelines, which puts them at an increased risk of chronic diseases associated with low physical activity.

Resistance training

Resistance training has been scientifically proven to help and improve many, if not all, the signs of anxiety listed above. Resistance training is an exercise modality that has a positive influence on muscular strength, endurance, bone density, and body composition as well as cognitive behaviour, quality of sleep and energy levels. Individuals who are coping with an anxiety disorder that partake in resistance exercise training have responded well with a decrease in anxiety, improved mood, decreased worry, decreased depression, increased cognition, and reductions in cardiovascular responses to mental stress. Research has found that when state anxiety levels are elevated before exercise, there is a resulting decrease in state anxiety independent of intensity.

Our youth programme is designed to help teens to excel and express their physical capabilities through strength and conditioning which is also proven to help and improve our teens mental and psychosocial well-being in today's world.

To sign up, just click on the link below or email me at




Killarney centre stage for Pride Festival

The award-winning Kingdom Pride in Kerry festival is back next week and Killarney will take centre stage. Kingdom Pride will be celebrated in towns all across the county from July […]




The award-winning Kingdom Pride in Kerry festival is back next week and Killarney will take centre stage.

Kingdom Pride will be celebrated in towns all across the county from July 17 to 21.

The organisation’s flagship Party in the Park event will be held again in Killarney House and Gardens, following the Pride march in the town centre on July 20.

This year, in solidarity with the people of Palestine, Kingdom Pride in Kerry is inviting the people of Kerry to come to show their unity by bringing Palestinian flags and kites to the march, and to the Party in the Park.

“Pride is a protest for human rights all over the world. Here in the Kingdom, we have been so lucky to receive tremendous community support from our allies and supporters, and we see the struggle for liberation of all peoples as a united cause,” said Daniel Quirke, chairperson of the organising committee.

“Our events have always welcomed everyone, regardless of gender, orientation, religion, or nationality. We truly believe that together we can create positive change through caring for and loving one another. This year is no exception, and we look forward to helping to highlight the Palestinian cause, and to bringing people together to keep generating positive change for all people.”

Events will take place in Cahersiveen, Listowel, Killorglin, Tralee and Dingle, and include an Irish comedy night with Áine Gallagher, an Irish-language movie screening, yoga, sea swimming, poetry and storytelling, bowling, pitch and putt, a lively drag night at the INEC, and plenty more for people of all ages.

“We do our best to keep tickets as low-cost as possible, and we have lots of events that are totally free to attend. It is important to us that people can share Pride with us, regardless of income. Especially with the rise of the cost of living putting a strain on people’s pockets.” added the chairperson.


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A weekend of Live Music, Fun and Entertainment, at FleskFest 2024

The organisers of the annual FleskFest have “a tremendous line-up, with a weekend full of entertainment to suit all” for the July 18 to 20 event. “It promises to be […]




The organisers of the annual FleskFest have “a tremendous line-up, with a weekend full of entertainment to suit all” for the July 18 to 20 event.

“It promises to be the festival weekend of the summer, an event you don’t want to miss out on. Last year’s Festival was a fantastic memorable experience for our community, a time to get together and celebrate,” said festival PRO Seán Daly.

Organised by Glenflesk GAA, FleskFest 24 will take place at the Barraduff Community Field next week.
There will be a fully licensed bar in the Fest Marquee, some amazing live music on The Big Stage, food trucks and much more.
Glenflesk GAA club’s biggest fundraiser of the year includes a new-for-2024 Texas Holdem Poker Tournament on Thursday night.
Weekend highlights include old-time waltzing, jiving and polka sets with Paudie McAuliffe and Paudie Coffey Band on Friday,
On Saturday, the new Well Flesk event will take place.
“A morning of self-care and wellness at Flesk Fest featuring masterclasses in yoga, pilates, mindfulness, spinning, fitness sessions, workouts, firewood sauna and ice pods with a range of experienced and qualified instructors,” added Daly.
Leading local musician Johnny Courtney and Friends, Sam and Ina, The O’Donoghue Sisters, Reigning All Ireland Champions Glenflesk Ballad Group, and The Border Boys will take to the Big Stage over the weekend.
Sunday is Family Fun Day with children’s entertainment and disco and the All-Ireland Hurling Final Live on the Big screen followed by music with Thingamajig.
The festival will finish with a Sunday evening session with the Meadhbh Walsh Band.

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