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Ideas for walking more

Ideas for Walking More

Try these ideas and resources for increasing how much walking you do.

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Benefits of Walking

Many studies have shown that walking for even 10 minutes per day can have a significant impact on how you feel. In summary, walking can:

  • Increase mental alertness, energy and general positivity
  • Increase self-esteem and reduce stress and anxiety
  • Lower the risk of developing depression and dementia by 20% - 30%
  • Help you reach the recommended weekly physical exercise target of 75 – 150 minutes

Visit the Mental Health Foundation’s page ‘How to look after your mental health using exercise’ for expansion on the above benefits and more.

 

Thriving With Nature

Thriving with Nature is a comprehensive guide to walking in natural spaces for wellbeing and mental health. Composed by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the Mental Health Foundation, the guide includes detailed information on how nature can help you and how you can help nature. Along with this, the guide is brought to life through illustrations, seasonal sensory activities and personal stories.
 

Shinrin-Yoku

Shinrin yoku Photo by Steven Kamenar on Unsplash

 

Shinrin-yoku, translated into English as ‘forest bathing’ is a Japanese therapy developed in the 1980’s.

 

  • It has since become a cornerstone of Japanese preventative health and healing medicine.
  • Research has shown that spending time among trees creates calming neuro-psychological effects, reducing the Cortisol stress hormone and boosting the immune system.
  • Studies have demonstrated reductions in stress, anger, anxiety, depression and sleeplessness.

How to do it? Simply go for a wander in your local woodland, forest or park. A few tips:

  • Remove distractions (e.g. switch off your phone)
  • Take your time – just wander and allow yourself to go wherever your body takes you
  • Occasionally stop to look at something more closely, listen to something more clearly or feel something more carefully
  • Maybe find a nice spot to sit for a while and just enjoy it

Best done alone but if you do share your wander with someone else, try not talking to each