May is National Walking Month, an initiative founded by Living Streets, a charity that promotes the benefits of walking, and whose aim is "to get people of all generations to enjoy the benefits that this simple act brings and to ensure all our streets are fit for walking".
So, if you can walk, why not 'take steps' to increase the amount of distance your two feet carry you this month – and the next. Look below to explore the benefits of walking – for you, for those around you and for our towns and cities.
Walking to school
This video, featuring Living Streets' WOW (Walk Once a Week) campaign aimed at schoolchildren, sets out several of the general benefits of walking. In particular, it emphasises the children's health and wellbeing, the reduction in congestion at the school gate.
More about National Walking Month ...
As well as generally raising awareness, Living Streets' national campaign this year has three specific features:
- Walk to School Week. This takes place between 15th and 19th May, and encourages schools up and down the country to encourage their students to walk to school.
- Try20. This encourages people to walk an extra twenty minutes each day – and particularly focuses on working people, encouraging them to walk to work if they can or to walk in their lunch breaks. #try20
- Walking around Cities. Walking is a great way to find out about a city, and 'Crumbs City Trails' is an app that presents specific city tours. So why not take a walking tour, or even just wander around – you never know what you might discover.
Interesting links ...
A few links if you want to find out more ...
• This page from HowStuffWorks is a good, comprehensive overview of the benefits of walking.
• A walk around Worcester, from the AA.
• ... and a long list of circular walks more generally around the county, from Worcestershire County Council.
• A scientific report into the benefits of gentle aerobic exercise in older age – in particular, the benefits for the brain, including reducing the risk of dementia.
... plus another film ...