Walk For Well-Being

This October is Walk to School Month so let’s ditch the bus and hit the pavement!

Looking to get fitter and feel better? Then have we got the challenge for you! This month, why not aim to walk to and from school every day? Walking can improve your mental, physical and emotional health and well-being – and you don’t have to walk miles to feel the benefits!

Why Is Walking Good For You?

Walking can make you:

  • Feel happier – active people are 30% less likely to become depressed.*
  • Lose weight – walking just one mile can burn up to 100 calories!
  • Be more productive
  • Feel more able to manage stress and anxiety
  • Feel more relaxed
  • Live longer! Walking for just 15 minutes every day can increase your life expectancy by 3 years!

Getting outdoors and moving your body is a great way to set you up for the day ahead. You’ll feel much more able to deal with whatever life throws at you when you’ve got a spring in your step!

Walk With Mates!

If walking to school on your own doesn’t appeal, why not arrange to meet a friend or two and walk together? You can make lots of great memories together on your journey to and from school, plus it’s always great to have the support of mates to keep you motivated.

There are lots of ways you can make a walk more interesting. You can challenge friends to a step count competition, aim to spot new things you’ve never seen noticed on your usual walk (an unusual carving on a building, a funny street sign etc.) or plan a different route to see new sights. For more ideas on how to spice up your stroll, click here.

Walking – What’s Recommended?

Well, the good news is you don’t need to walk your socks off to reap the benefits. The NHS recommend children aged 5-18 should aim to do at least 60 minutes of moderate physical activity, such as a walk, every week.† That’s just over 8 minutes every day! Wondering how you can tell if your walk counts as moderate activity? The NHS say if you can still talk, but not sing, you’re exercising at a moderate pace. Walking briskly to school is the perfect moderate activity!

Over 18? It’s recommended you should do at least 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of moderate activity per week. That works out at just over 21 minutes per day.

Don’t forget: if you haven’t exercised for some time or have any health concerns, check with your GP before starting your new walk to school regime.

Ready, Steady, WALK!

Whether you plan to walk to and from school by yourself or want to get your mates involved, you can look forward to feeling more energetic, positive and, yes, happier, for the whole of October! So, what are you waiting for? Wrap up warm against the chilly autumn weather, grab your school bag and get steppin’!

To get more tips on how to make the most of International Walk To School Month, click here.

*Source: https://www.walkingforhealth.org.uk/get-walking/why-walk/healthy-minds
†Source: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/exercise/physical-activity-guidelines-children-and-young-people/#:~:text=Children%20and%20young%20people%20aged%205%20to%2018%20should%3A,movement%20skills%2C%20muscles%20and%20bones

Curated by

Sian Dolan
Sian Dolan is a content writer for Hidden Strength with a background in children’s and teenage magazines. She feels it’s more important than ever to write supportive, engaging features for young adults who need a guiding light and a helping hand with their mental health and wellbeing.