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A group of people walking in a park

Walk for your wellbeing

Walking gets the feet moving, the mind relaxing and the blood pumping.

Summer’s here, and now is the time to get moving more for your wellbeing. Walking is a great way to start getting active, and you can go at your own pace. It really is the best physical exercise for all ages and abilities. Share your walks with LiveWell, we would love to see you walk for your wellbeing!

Walking is simple, free, and accessible. It is one of the easiest ways to get more active, lose weight and become healthier. Walking is a great cardio exercise both indoors and outdoors.

Not everyone realises, walking is a form of exercise, which can do wonders for your health and wellbeing. It can lower blood pressure, improve cholesterol, and increase energy; the best thing is, walking is low-risk and easy to start! 

You do not have to go for hour long walks to make a difference to your wellbeing. Doing a brisk 10-minute walk every day can help build stamina, burn excess calories, and make your heart healthier. You can discover more walking health benefits on the NHS website. 

The easiest way to walk more is to make walking a healthy habit. There are a variety of easy, practical ways to include walking in your daily routine.

  • Go for a family walk
  • Walk and talk on the phone
  • Have a work walking challenge
  • Take the dog for a walk 
  • Have a walking meeting 
  • Walk to local shops 
  • Take the stairs 
  • Go window shopping 
  • Join a walking group 
  • Walk for charity 
  • Have a walking lunch break 
  • Go for a walk with friends 
  • Park further away and walk to work 
#MyLiveWellWalk Taking the dog for a walk is a great way to incorporate more walking in your day.

Another walking bonus, there's no right or wrong way to walk, and it's ok to walk differently to others. Walking allows you to go at your own pace, but if you want to get more out of the steps you take, you can always try a different style of walk. 

Brisk walking 

This style of walking includes going at a pace that is quicker than your steady walk. When you go for a brisk walk, you may feel a little breathless, but you should still be able to hold down a conversation. Doing a little stretching before you set out is a good idea, so you don’t cause yourself any injuries. 

Power Walking 

A little quicker than brisk walking, this walk requires moving your bent arms to increase your speed. Power walking can burn off as many calories as jogging, so it’s a great way to start losing weight. Having the right gear, finding a good path and getting a buddy will make this style of walking more fun. 

Race Walking 

A notch above power walking, race walking can be competitive. From youth athletics to Olympics Games, race walking is contested in all levels of track and field. Racers must always maintain contact with the ground, with the leading leg straightened as the foot makes contact with the ground. 

Chi Walking 

Chi walking focuses more on incorporating Tai Chi movements into your walk. It’s a low-impact and pain-free way to improve your health. This type of walking is a great alternative for those rehabilitating from an illness or injury. It emphasizes good posture, loose joints, engaging the core, and relaxing the arms and legs. 

Marathon Walking 

Walkers can compete in marathon courses at a slower pace over several hours. Marathon walking gives people the chance to explore locations in a different way through a jampacked route. It is best to put aside the whole day for your efforts when taking part in marathon walking. 

Nordic Walking 

This type of walking looks like skiing but without the skis. Walkers use two poles to push down from the ground, working out more muscles than a normal walk does. Nordic walking is quite often popular amongst more elderly walkers, as they enjoy the stability that the poles offer.

 

A couple nordic walking

     

       Walking tips

  • Build up your activity by starting with a 20-minute walk, then increase gradually 
  • Use the Active 10 or Strava app to track your walk  
  • Take water and healthy snacks on long walks to stay energised 
  • Add variety to your walks and try different locations 
  • Wear comfortable and supportive shoes or trainers to prevent any blisters 
  • Apply sunscreen regularly when walking in the sun to avoid sunburn 
  • Prepare for your walk by warming up and doing some stretching 
  • Invest in walking shoes and a waterproof jacket if you are making long walks a regular thing 
  • On hot, sunny days, walk during the cooler parts of the day like first thing in the morning or late evening
  • Cool down after a long walk and do a few stretches


Dorset Health Walks 

If you are looking to get more active and connect with others, then a health walk could be the one for you. Dorset health walks are free. They’re a short and regular guided walk that lasts between ten to ninety minutes for people of all abilities, especially for those who would like to get moving more.

These walks are a great opportunity to explore green spaces, towns and villages across Dorset. Being a part of a health walk group is the best way to stay motivated by encouraging and supporting one another. Explore health walk locations near you.

Family Walks 

Walking is a great way to spend time on your family's wellbeing. Encouraging your children to get active is not always easy. We’ve got some tips to help make family walks a regular thing.  

Dorset Accessible Countryside 

We are lucky to have a variety of walks across the Dorset countryside and coast that are disabled access, wheelchair friendly and accessible to all. A lot of these walking trails are a great idea for a fun-filled day out. Find accessible walks in Dorset. 

Walking Charity Challenges

Taking part in a walking challenge is a great way to support charities while creating a healthier you. There's a wide range of Dorset based and virtual charity events happening this summer. Choose your challenge.

#MyLiveWellWalk 

Don't forget to tag us in your walks on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We will be sharing our favourite ones across social media, and the OurLiveWell Facebook group!

 

Walking facts: 10,000 recommended daily number of steps and short walks every day has the potential to increase productivity by up to 30%.

 

If you thrive in the benefits of walking, and feel it's time to make more, better, healthy lifestyle changes, then talk to us! We are here to support anyone who wants to become more active.

Register today and get the support you need…from us! Our friendly team of Dorset advisors and coaches are here for you. Signing up is easy, completely free and – quite simply – life-changing.

 

 

 

How does this work?

The tailored approach LiveWell Dorset uses to come up with solutions to the things that are stopping us achieving our goals, is based upon work done by University College London developing the COM-B model of behaviour change. In this model, all behaviour is influenced by understanding a person’s capability to change, their opportunity to change and their motivation to change. By understanding which of these is the biggest barrier to change, we can tailor support accordingly. This model of behaviour change is at the centre of the support we offer, online and in person.

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