Walking is the easiest, cheapest and most accessible form of exercise for most people. It is easy to start, easy to maintain, and easy to adapt as abilities and circumstances change. Walking can keep people connected to their local communities, combating loneliness and isolation and helping keep older people independent and flourishing.
Older people are as diverse as the population as a whole. Spanning at least two generations, with a huge range of tastes, lifestyles and abilities, it is hard to generalise about what will help or suit everyone over 60. In this resource, we offer a range of ideas, resources and examples of success for people to pick from to suit their circumstances. We look at some of the common experiences of older age, such as the lifestyle changes of retirement, and ways to adopt and adapt walking habits to address some of the health challenges that might come with ageing.
Living Streets’ Walking Connects project has spent three years working with older people across Scotland to look at barriers to walking, and to co-produce innovative solutions to address them. This resource draws together some of Walking Connects’ findings with work from across Living Streets to give groups, venues and residential settings some practical ways to promote walking and support older people to start and maintain the walking habit.
There are also resources here for friends and family looking to support an older person with starting or maintaining a walking habit, and for people working in places where older people live and visit who want to make those places walking-friendly.
For older people who are concerned about losing mobility, or feeling less secure about walking.
For older people who want to build walking into their everyday routines, or who have lost the walking habit.
For older people who would like to start walking with a group, or encourage others to take up a walking habit.