A substance abuse charity has invited the people it supports to fight their inner demons in the boxing ring.
Alcohol and Drugs Action (ADA), based at Hadden Street in Aberdeen, offers help and assistance to individuals who struggle with addiction from all across the north-east.
And in addition to more traditional methods of support, it has now established a boxing scheme, where those in recovery can enjoy a free hour of exercise every week at Northfield Community Centre. Jim Maitland, whom the ADA has supported in his battle with alcohol for almost three years, is one of the around 20 people who have taken advantage of the initiative.
He said the boxing sessions help him to focus and get fit at the same time.
Mr Maitland, 52, said: “It’s amazing, it really gets the endorphins and the adrenaline flowing.
“It makes me more focused, and it shows that there are better things to do than to drink alcohol.
“It’s a serious workout too, but the best thing is you completely tire yourself out, and get a brilliant sleep at the end of it. Instead of just laying in bed with my thoughts wandering everywhere, you get a perfect night’s sleep, and wake up feeling brand new.
“I’ve met so many great people through the charity, and this boxing is just the best thing they’ve done so far, everyone I’ve spoken to loves it.”
Finlay Colville, a substance abuse worker for the charity, said the idea came together thanks to collaboration with the Byron Boxing Club.
He said: “We started the boxing and exercise project earlier this year, and it’s just been getting better and better.
“It helps for our service users to be completely focused on one thing, and of course it’s great to socialise with others who are going through a similar situation.
“In a way, it’s almost meditative, you’re not thinking about any issues or any problems, because you’re just enjoying fun exercise, being part of a group, and learning new skills and techniques.
“There are lots of benefits for people in recovery.”
To find out more about the scheme and the charity’s other work, visit www.alcoholanddrugsaction.org.uk