With the winter chill, hopefully, behind us, people across Trafford are taking the ‘first big step’ in getting active through a free community walking scheme.
The Walk for Health Trafford initiative, which is supported by Trafford CCG, Trafford Public Health Sale Sports Club and Transport for Greater Manchester, is involving hundreds of local residents in a series of regular walks and is expanding to welcome even more.
Dr Yvonne Burke, who landed Volunteer of the Year alongside her Boundary House Medical Centre walkers at the latest Trafford Sports Awards for helping spearhead the walking group, said: “ The Chief Medical Officer advises a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise per week where we are out of puff. The walks offer that first step to becoming more active and are also a great opportunity to discover our local area and meet new people.
“They have proved hugely popular and the numbers keep on growing. Around 25 people attend each walk and some walks having an opportunity for a cup of tea and a chat at the end.”
“The routes vary but leave at a same time each week, which helps with getting into a good routine.”
“The aim is to develop a network of volunteer led accessible walks for our communities in Trafford.”
“Now the worst of the cold weather has hopefully passed, I encourage everyone to give it a go.”
Walk for Health Trafford forms part of the national Walking for Health scheme, which was founded 14 years ago to help people across England lead a more active lifestyle and counter serious illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
Sixteen practices across Trafford are already involved in the project, with routes recently launched from Primrose Surgery, Urmston and Walton Park in Sale, and many more planned for the coming weeks.
People of all ages and ability are welcome to turn up without booking at any of the upcoming 30-60 minute walks, which can be viewed online here.
Volunteers are needed to help continue the rapid growth of the scheme, so those looking to try their hand as a walk leader or offer support with administration should contact Dave Walmsley at email@example.com.