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The health benefits of walking

So many people are put off exercise because they think it means running a marathon, swimming the channel or cycling across England. There is one thing that is free and gentle on the body meaning most people can do it.



Walking is a great way of getting more active and as little as 10 minutes brisk walking can make a difference. The benefits of walking regularly include:

  • increased cardiovascular and pulmonary (heart and lung) fitness.
  • reduced risk of heart disease and stroke
  • improved management of conditions such as hypertension (high blood pressure), high cholesterol, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and diabetes
  • stronger bones and improved balance

It is so easy to incorporate walking into your daily life so that you are healthier, more activity and saving money. See some of the ways you can walk every day:

  • walking part of your journey to work
  • walking to the shops
  • using the stairs instead of the lift
  • leaving the car behind for short journeys
  • walking the kids to school
  • doing a regular walk with a friend
  • going for a stroll with family or friends after dinner

Walking for Health is England’s largest network of health walks with over 350 active walking schemes, helping people across the country lead a more active lifestyle.

The walks are short and over easy terrain, and are open to everyone but are especially aimed at those who are least active.

1,800 weekly walks are supported by around 8,300 friendly, specially trained volunteers who are on hand to provide encouragement and support, and make sure no one gets left behind. Every week we reach on average 24,000 walkers, supporting them to experience the benefits of getting and staying active.

Many walkers start walking to improve their health, but find it easy to keep coming back because of all the new friends they’ve made. So as well as all the physical health benefits, Walking for Health is also great for your social life!



There are over 200 health walks held each week in Kent. Interested in joining a walk then check out the links below for more information.

Dartford Health Walks

East Kent Health Walks

Every Step Counts: Health Walk (Sevenoaks)

Maidstone: Get Walking and Talking

Medway Health Walks

Tonbridge & Malling Health Walks



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