Living Well, an initiative led by Bradford Council’s Public Health with Bradford and Craven Health and Care Partnership, is asking adults in Bradford district to join the 20 Minute Movement to improve their physical and mental health and well-being, by committing to be more active.
Spring is a great time to start being more active, the nights are lighter, and the weather is improving, which makes it much easier to fit some physical activity into daily life.
The 20-Minute Movement aims to encourage people to move their bodies more, for at least 20 minutes every day. It’s not about expensive gyms or fancy trainers, it’s about simple things day to day that people can do to be healthier and happier.
NHS guidelines recommend adults aged 19-64 should do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity each week, which we’ve broken down into manageable amounts of at least 20 minutes every day.
Moderate-intensity activity should raise your heart rate, make you breathe a bit faster and feel warmer. There are lots of different activities you could do including brisk walking, riding a bike and dancing to name a few. If you can find something you enjoy doing, you’re much more likely to stick to it!
If time is an issue, you don’t even have to do the whole 20 minutes all at once. You can do it in 5-minute chunks or do 10 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes in the evening! Do it inside or outside in the fresh air. It’s all about making a commitment or a promise to yourself to do something to be active every day. Help keep motivated by asking friends, family or work colleagues to join in too!
Sarah Muckle, Director of Public Health Bradford Council said: “Being more active can improve your mental health, helping you to deal with stress better and sleep well, but it can also significantly reduce often preventable health conditions such as hypertension (high blood pressure), type 2 diabetes and even some cancers.
It’s easy to join in and lots of different activities can count towards your 20 minutes each day. You could walk or cycle all or part of your way to work or school, get off the bus or train a stop earlier or simply park your car a bit further away and walk. You could even jog on the spot while you wait for the kettle to boil or have a lunchtime disco in your living room! Next time you arrange to catch up with a friend, instead of meeting for coffee maybe go for a walk!”
Workplaces in Bradford district can also join the 20 Minute Movement to help their staff be more active. Research has shown that the benefits of improving health in the workplace include increased motivation, a better working atmosphere, leading to more flexibility and better communication, and a reduction in absenteeism and staff turnover with increased quality of work, services and productivity. Employers can find useful resources to download from the Living Well website along with an option to order printed materials to display in the workplace.
There are lots of ideas to help you get started on the Living Well website along with a handy planner to record all your activities.
You can also find a new portal on the website to help you find activities in your local area that suit you, just type your postcode in to find out what’s available.
Find out more about the 20-Minute Movement at www.mylivingwell.co.uk and sign up for a monthly newsletter. Lots of useful information and tips will also be shared on social media. Join in and find ideas to help inspire others around you to get your friends, family and colleagues moving a bit more too!