We are into week two of the Five Ways to Wellbeing, showcasing the many voluntary and community groups which support people in Reading to be active.
I know that if I’m feeling low or fed-up, a good walk in the woods with friends will lift my spirits. A walk ticks so many boxes – be active, connect and take notice (the colours, sounds and smells in a wood are amazing!)
Here’s the local context showing the importance of physical activity:
- Reading’s draft Health and Wellbeing Strategy has, as Priority 1, “supporting people to make healthy lifestyle choices” including increasing physical activity.
- Reading’s JSNA (Joint Strategic Needs Assessment) states that “regular physical activity is.. associated with a greater sense of wellbeing and lower rates of depression and anxiety and there is some evidence that it can have a protective effect against cognitive decline in later life (Aked et al, 2008).”
- Although 55% of adults in Reading are considered active (doing at least 150 minutes of moderate activity a week), 25% are considered ‘inactive’ (doing less than 30 minutes of moderate activity per week)
There are so many great opportunities in Reading to encourage people to be active, from regular sports clubs etc to community groups running more gentle activities for their members. Here are some examples over the next couple of weeks
- Find out more about Reading’s Health Walks on 18th January
- A chance to try out walking football and netball, tai chi, nordic walking and new age bowls Open Day for Older Adults and Disabled Adults on 27th January
- Put on your glad rags for an Over 50s Tea Dance on 27th January at Wycliffe Church
Sport in Mind recognises the connection between physical activity and mental well-being “Our mission is to use sport to promote mental well-being and enrich the lives of people experiencing mental health problems through the provision of regular inclusive sport and exercise sessions”. They offer an extensive programme of activities across Berkshire from football, badminton and table tennis to yoga and tai chi. Read some fabulous stories from service users about how being active has helped to transform their lives.
And hot off the press, Sport in Mind is starting Nordic Walking as a trial for the next 6 weeks at Prospect Park. Nordic walking is a total body version of walking with specially designed walking poles similar to ski poles. It’s every Thursday ( starting 19th January 2017) 1.30 -2.30. (For more information see the Sport in Mind website)
Have a look at our Wellbeing pages for find out about other voluntary and community groups supporting people to BE ACTIVE
As I cycle into the sunset, I’m handing over to Rachel for the next couple of weeks! Watch out for TAKE NOTICE and KEEP LEARNING.