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The health and wellbeing benefits of walking are vast and can broadly be subdivided into: physical, social and mental. Physical health is often the first one we think of when we think health, but it is just one aspect of our overall health and wellbeing.
Walkers are most like to meet the physical activity guidelines than non-walkers. 65% if adults walk weekly.
It is a low impact form of exercise and a gateway activity to higher intensity physical activities.
- Fun, free and flexible
- Suitable for all ages and abilities
- Low impact form of exercise
- A gateway activity to higher intensity physical activities
- For recreation
- A popular physical activity
- For health and well-being
- walkers are more likely to meet the physical activity guidelines than non-walkers for transport
Physical wellbeing includes the following components:
Heart & Lung Health:
As we get older our joints start to feel as if they are seizing up.When we move our joints (eg. knees, hips, shoulders) we stimulate the flow of synovial fluid which is the WD40 for our joints. We also know that regular activity and walking strengthens the muscles and ligaments that are stabilising our joints.
With age our bones naturally start to get weaker, but we can offset this decline by trying to build weight bearing activities into our day. Walking is a gentle form of a weight bearing activity and will serve to maintain the bone density needed to keep our bones strong and healthy.
Walking is an ideal way to strengthen muscles involved in walking (mainly leg muscles) as well as many muscles that help maintain good posture (core muscles).
Read the rest of the Get Walking series - looking at Finding Walks, Mental Wellbeing, Being Active during Covid19. Do you need specific Gear? Look at Warm Up & Posture and Are you doing enough?How to deal with Excuses and setting some very important Goals! Read some Top Tips and think about Setting up a Walking Group and finally some useful sample Walking Programmes you can use.