Step up your health with free guided walks

Walking can improve your health.
Walking can improve your health.

A new timetable of free weekly health walks has been launched by Active Northumberland to encourage more people to get out into the great outdoors and improve their health.

The group walks cover routes of varying distances – from short, intermediate and long – right across the county and are suitable for all levels of ability.

Some of the walks are very gentle and last just 30 minutes to encourage new walkers and those with long-term health conditions to feel more confident in getting started.

They are led by friendly, trained volunteers who are on hand to provide encouragement and support and help people enjoy the many physical and mental health benefits that regular walking brings.

Walking is a low impact exercise that has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia, stroke and some cancers.

Getting out in the fresh air with friends can help to combat loneliness and depression.

Northumberland county councillor, Cath Homer, cabinet member with responsibility for leisure services said: “Walking is good for our health, it’s a great mood-booster and a great way for people to get more exercise into their busy lives.”

“On our walks you’ll have great company, trained leaders and safe walking routes to get you on your way to healthier lifestyle. ”

If you’d like to give it a go, all you have to do is turn up at the meeting point wearing sensible footwear, appropriate outdoor clothing and bring sunscreen and water if it is a hot day.

To view the new timetable of summer walks, log on to www.activenorthumberland.org.uk and search health walks under the A-Z section.

Many libraries, GP surgeries and council contact centres hold a supply of printed programmes.

For information about walks in north Northumberland, contact Jane Hardy on jhardy01@activenorthumberland.org.uk or ring 01670 627327.

For the south east, contact Andrew Tunnah on Atunnah@northumberland.gov.uk or ring 01670 623512