Thursday, 5 January 2012

Davey's Blog Post - Walk for Health

Walking For Health, often written as WfH or W4H is part of the National Change4Life initiative. You will have seen the multi-coloured plasticine characters everywhere, even if you didn't know what they were at the time. It all centres around the concept that we all need to "Move More and Eat Less" to maintain our health. WfH has lots of names, sometimes it is known as Walk'n'Talk, Striders, or simply named after the location. It is well established in the Exeter area where the main scheme is called "Stepping Out" and I hope that any group we start, assuming it is well enough attended, will be under that umbrella. Stepping Out provide free guided walking in and around Exeter 6 days a week. Further details are at:

Our current walk on Wednesdays mornings, not yet included with Stepping Out, leaves the Hub at 1045 and returns by 1200 for a cup of tea/coffee and some social time. If we discover that another day/time suits a larger audience then there may be some room for manoeuvre. I will normally have my son in his pushchair so it is baby friendly and we may visit a playpark on our route providing that children are old enough to use one. There is absolutely no charge for the walking and The Hub has the best priced coffee in Exeter! Men and women in all states of health are welcome, as are accompanied children of all ages. Walkers must understand that the speed and route of the walk may be adjusted at the last minute to accomodate disability, someone with walking difficulty, weather or other factors. In short it is not SAS selection but a healthy walk pitched at the level of need. If you are that person then others will accomodate you and not the other way round. 

I could scare you with tales of sedentary lifestyles, and the massive health problems associated, but I feel it is more important to talk benefits. Most of us can walk, most of us enjoy socialising, we already own the equipment needed and the walking is free. Please come along next Weds to the Hub by 1045, we canot hang around if it is cold, or come and talk to me after the walk at 1200. 

In order that the scheme runs smoothly we will need more leaders, so that I can go to work! Fortunately I am qualified to train leaders so if you already hold WfH leader status or would be interested in getting it then please let me know. 

Walking is an easy to maintain New Year's Resolution, there is no expensive gym membership or equipment. 

At any pace it is excellent at promoting: Mental Health, Sleep, Weight Management, 'Good' Cholesterol and your Immune system. 

At a brisk pace it can improve heart and lung function and reduce blood pressure. 

It helps to prevent: Diabetes, Osterarthritis and Osteoporosis, Bowel and Breast Cancer and the Risk of Falls in the Elderly.


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