Got an idea to inspire your community to get moving? $10,000 grants up for grabs.

Have you got a new idea that helps people to get active? Your idea might be the key to get your community on the move.

More than 50% of Australians miss out on the exercise they need. Regular physical activity helps to control other heart health risks, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and being overweight.

Got an idea to inspire your community to get moving? Share it with the Heart Foundation’s Active Australia Innovation Challenge. The Challenge is awarding 8 winning ideas with up to a $10,000 grant each. Current round closes 31 July.

Explore ideas and get inspiration from 2018’s grants. Find out more at heartfoundation.org.au/active-australia-innovation-challenge

The City of Marion adopts Walking and Cycling Guidelines

Planning for pedestrians is rare in South Australia.  Aided by funding from the State government, plenty of Councils have developed a bicycle plan, but few have done the same for walking – none in recent years.

So we welcome the City of Marion updating it’s 2012 Walking and Cycling Strategy with these Guidelines 2018-2022.

The Guidelines have been prepared by the consultants, Oxigen. Their adoption has not been without controversy, with broad-ranging calls for narrower streets and wider footpaths being rejected by Councillors.

Nevertheless there is enough in the adopted Guidelines in terms of safer road crossings, more street trees and “increasing footpath width where appropriate” to provide a source of support for residents wanting to improve the walkability of Marion’s suburbs.

The Guidelines make it obvious that much could be done, especially in the newer, hillier suburbs south of Darlington.  There, pedestrians suffer from bad street layouts that make distances from home to anywhere much more lengthy than they would be on the plain.  Here are two snapshots from the Guidelines contrasting the road layouts of Edwardstown and one of the newer suburbs, such as Sheidow Park or Trott Park:

Two snapshots from the Guidelines contrasting the road layouts of Edwardstown and one of the newer suburbs, such as Sheidow Park or Trott Park. In the latter, footpaths are typically on one side of the road often less than a metre wide, and even the reserves don’t have paths.

Two snapshots from the Guidelines contrasting the road layouts of Edwardstown and one of the newer suburbs, such as Sheidow Park or Trott Park. In the latter, footpaths are typically on one side of the road often less than a metre wide, and even the reserves don’t have paths.

Street trees are rare, as this aerial of Sheidow Park indicates:

Street trees are rare, as this aerial of Sheidow Park indicates.

Street trees are rare, as this aerial of Sheidow Park indicates.

While improving connectivity will be difficult, a lot can be done to improve walking conditions at street level.  Fortunately a new source of funding to do this should become available via the State Liberal Government’s Greening Neighbourhoods Program.

We have yet to see the details, but it is understood that funding from the Open Space Levy paid by developers will soon be available to help pay for the greening of suburban streets, including street trees and infrastructure such as treenet inlets.  These would act to keep the trees healthy, discourage tree routes from snaking under footpaths to suburban lawns (wrecking the pavement in the process), while at the same time helping to make our drains better able to cope with the flooding.

Left:- Tree roots at right angle to infrastructure: unsafe footpaths & damaged kerbs. Right:- Tree roots parallel to infrastructure: safe footpaths and undamaged kerbs.

Left:- Tree roots at right angle to infrastructure: unsafe footpaths & damaged kerbs. Right:- Tree roots parallel to infrastructure: safe footpaths and undamaged kerbs.

Australian Walking and Cycling Conference, 24 – 25 October 2019 at Port Adelaide

Australian Walking and Cycling Conference logo

The Australian Walking and Cycling Conference will be held Thursday and Friday 24 – 25 October 2019 at the Port Adelaide Town Hall with the theme Active transport in a changing climate.

The conference aspires to promote creating a transport mode shift away from cars towards walking and cycling, and using active means to link with improved public transport in suburbs and rural towns. We want to shift away from CO2 reliant mobility and keep people active as temperatures rise.

As the leading Australian forum for high-quality cycling and waking research, the Conference strongly contributes to an energetic and positive network of professionals dealing with local, national and international issues.

This is the only forum to have the core aims of advancing and promoting the development of rigorous research into cycling and walking.

Looking for a way to build walking into your weekly schedule?

Parkrun have regular walks and runs each Saturday, social share

Are you looking for a way to build walking into your weekly schedule?

Don’t be put off by the name Parkrun, walkers are always welcome to join. They organise free, weekly, 5km timed walks or runs. They are open to everyone, free, and are safe and easy to take part in. These are set up as events usually in pleasant parklands surroundings and are run by a volunteer network.

With 32 Parkruns held each Saturday morning throughout South Australia, there’s bound to be one near you. Search for one nearby you via their map at parkrun.com.au/events, or review the list below.

Not one near you? There might be soon, Parkrun is spreading rapidly throughout South Australia, having added 12 new events in the first 9 months of this year, since starting their first one here in SA in 2012.

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Walking can transform your life, hear Bill’s story using walking to recover from a stroke

Walking can transform your life. Bill talks about how after suffering a stroke he felt pretty low, and to overcome how frustrated he felt he decided to start walking, at first doing small walks then slowly challenging himself to do more.

“Back then I felt pretty hopeless at walking, but now, the personal satisfaction cant be described really, it’s nature, the birds, the bees, the waterfalls, it’s freedom, it’s so beautiful. Everyday you see something that you don’t see the day before.”

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Transcript:

I suffered a stroke back in 2002, and for a long time I couldn’t walk and after about 12 months of that I got very frustrated, so I tried to have a go, and that’s why I started.

I was down on the beach, feeling pretty low, because I couldn’t walk properly, and I met a friend of mine, who I used to work with, who met me on the beach. He was doing a fitness walk, as people do, and he met me and wondered why I was stumbling. We got to talking and decided he would stay with me every day thereafter helping me to take another 10, 20 yards, climb these stairs, let’s not climb, let’s do another set, that’s just how it worked… and [I feel] very very lucky.

Walking now is almost a daily thing, I try and take one day off a week, I try and force myself to do that. Usually every day 7 or 8 k’s along the beach, and then once a week I try and get and up into the Hills or something and do 20 k 25 k hike.

The most challenging walk has probably been the Overland Trail in Tasmania. When I started hiking first my granddaughter joined me to help me hike, then my brother jumped in when she popped out and we both enjoyed it, so we decided to give the Overland Trail in Tasmania a go. Climbing up over Cradle Mountain and around the lake, and that was probably the most challenging, the rain, wind, you name it, we had it.

Back then I felt pretty hopeless at it, but now, the personal satisfaction cant be described really, it’s nature, the birds, the bees, the waterfalls, it’s freedom, it’s so beautiful. Everyday you see something that you don’t see the day before.

Way2Go Walktober – a chance to practice new habits and walk to school

way2goThe Government of South Australia’s Active School Travel program Way2Go is joining in Walktober SA by supporting more families and children to walk to school.

Way2Go Walktober, from October 15 to 31, is a chance to practice new habits. Walk to school with your children – just once a week will make a difference:

  • try once a week and build up
  • take turns with other families to walk with kids and make it fun
  • mix it up by riding a bike or scooter (You all can ride on the footpath)

Too far to walk the whole way? Park the car nearby and walk part of the way to school.

Read more tips, including about planning ahead and how to support your child at dpti.sa.gov.au/Way2Go/way2go_walktober

We know that using active travel to get to school is good for children’s physical health, as well as their growing brains, bones, muscles and imaginations!

Here at Walking SA we’re keen to see more children walking and cycling safely to school. View our Position Statement.

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with WalktoberSA.

Keeping active can help you stay physically fit and mentally healthy

Shared via Beyond Blue:

Regular physical activity is a good way to help prevent or manage mild anxiety and depression. Keeping active can help you stay physically fit and mentally healthy.

Research shows that keeping active can:

  • help lift mood through improved fitness and the release of natural chemicals in the brain
  • help improve sleeping patterns
  • increase energy levels
  • help block negative thoughts and/or distract people from daily worries
  • help people feel less alone if they exercise with others.

Physical activity increases your wellbeing. The current recommendation is at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity on most, and preferably all, days of the week. However, people with anxiety or depression may find it difficult to get started or get motivated, or continue to exercise on a long-term basis.

View Beyond Blue’s:

  • tips to get started,
  • examples of activities,
  • or download their Activity Plan template.

beyondblue.org.au/get-support/staying-well/keeping-active

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Hiking with children: how walking as a child led to being an active adult

Story via the Friends of the Heysen Trail.

Amelia writes of her family’s tradition of walking the Heysen Trail as a child – she was very much reluctant to do this, preferring to read books and make craft – and how by the time she was in high school she had well and truly caught the activity bug and to this day is still an active walker.

Last year she started walking the Heysen Trail as a family again, but this time with her own children. The great thing about the Heysen Trail is you don’t need to try and tackle it all at once, and can do short walks closer to Adelaide.

She asked her eight-year-old son his thoughts on the walks they’d done so far:

‘One of my favourite sections was the boggy bits. The others squelched into the mud probably because you’re bigger. But me, I got through easier and was dancing around waiting at the end of the bog.’

‘I liked the green and the tweeting of the birds. I liked going over the fields in the sunshine. I loved looking at the old mines with their deep, dark holes. I liked the feeling of the grass rustling against my leg because it was so long. I loved going through the valleys and hearing the echoes of our voices, cooo-eeee.’

Read the full article on the Friends of the Heysen Trail website.

Living a healthy lifestyle through joining a walking group and good nutrition: one man’s story of life with diabetes and rehabilitation

Glenn with his local Heart Foundation Walking group

Glenn with his local Heart Foundation Walking group

A great story of transformation through walking from Heart Foundation Walking:

Glenn McLennan was diagnosed with Diabetes in 2010 and by 2011 had his first operation on a foot. Unfortunately, complications set in in 2016 and by January 2017 both lower limbs were amputated.

12 months ago he joined his local Heart Foundation Walking group.

Walk Organiser Alison Gentles said, “He liked what he saw – a happy, friendly group and the flat surface because we walk at the shopping centre,” said Alison.

Glenn enjoys the social side of the group with the coffee catch up after the walk. With the support of the walking group, specialists and his local community; Glenn has a positive outlook and is committed to living a healthy lifestyle through walking and good nutrition. Glenn hopes his story will send a positive message to the younger generation about the importance of regular exercise and healthy eating.

Join a Heart Foundation Walking group to take positive steps to help reduce stress, have a healthier body, build stronger relationships, and most of all, be happy. With 128 groups across South Australia there’s sure to be one close to you.

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Article via Heart Foundation.

Bob’s story of walking from 160kg to one million steps

Bob Ueckert walked from 160kg to one million steps

A great story of transformation through walking from Heart Foundation Walking:

Fifteen years ago, Bob Ueckert lost his ability to walk after suffering a stroke. At the time, he weighed more than 160 kilograms, had high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and due to his stroke, was paralysed on the entire left side of his body.

Bob underwent rehabilitation to learn to walk again, lost more than 80 kilos, and found a new lease on life.

Over the last few months he has been participating in the Heart Foundation’s Prime Minister’s One Million Steps. He wasn’t even a quarter of the way in before hitting the magic one-million step mark.

Walking for an average of 30 minutes a day can lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes by 30 to 40 per cent, with evidence showing the benefits of walking also extend to the brain – improving learning and memory skills and reducing the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

The Prime Minister’s One Million Steps is about supporting the 52 per cent of Australians who are not active enough to improve their health by walking. Although the current round of the progrm has stopped, you can still use the app to track your steps, receive challenges and have the chance of winning a weekly prize.

Heart Foundation National CEO, Adjunct Professor John Kelly, said it’s never too late to join the Prime Minister’s One Million Steps.

“Any level of walking is better than none at all, but more is even better, particularly when it comes to reducing your risk of heart disease,” he said.

“Whether it means a 10-minute walk today and a longer walk tomorrow, whether it means getting off the bus, tram or train one stop earlier, every bit counts, and people who do the least amount of walking are the ones with the most to gain.”

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Article via Heart Foundation.

Walking faster may lead to a longer, healthier life

Walking faster may lead to a longer, healthier life

Walking faster may lead to a longer, healthier life.
To improve your health you’ve got to huff and puff and step up the pace until you’re out of breath.

Walking at an average pace was associated with a 20 per cent risk reduction for all-cause mortality compared with walking at a slow pace, and walking at a fast pace was associated with a 24 per cent risk reduction.

For people aged over 60, the benefits increased: an average walking pace was associated with a 45 per cent reduction in cardiovascular disease risk, and fast or brisk walking, a 55 per cent reduction.

The study by Sydney University analysed more than 50,200 walkers. Their most valuable message is that you’ve got to huff and puff and step up the pace until you’re out of breath, because that will lead to improvements.

And another study in Canada has confirmed what many people already believed: Walking for older people, even less than the recommended guidelines and only at moderate speed, can add years to your life. The 13-year study followed 140,000 people with an average age of 70.

Experts have calculated some best practice guidelines for time spent walking weekly. It’s about 150 minutes of moderately intense activity, or about 30 minutes five times a week, with about half that — 75 minutes a week — as a minimum.

But the study has found that even if you’re not meeting the minimum, the act of walking is still extremely valuable.

“Even a little walking might help you live longer. It’s been called a perfect exercise, it’s easy, cheap, doesn’t require special equipment and it doesn’t even have to be fast walking. Most of the participants said they walked about four kilometres an hour.”

Walking can transform your life, Bernie’s story of walking to a healthier life

Walking can transform your life, by improving your physical health and social connections. Bernie Victory talks about how getting involved in a charity walk led to losing weight, feeling healthier, and making new friends. He has found walking to inspire him to travel both locally and overseas to walking destinations.

“I find that the group I walk with, they’re a group of people with a huge range of skills. I think that’s one of the great things about walking, you can be together as equals within an enormous number and enormousness range of people, and it’s a great equality.”

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Transcript:

I’m in a walking group that doesn’t actually have a name. It’s just a loose collection of people that are strung together by a weekly email, but there’s about 200 people that get the email, and on every Saturday there’d be somewhere between 20 and 50 people walking.

I find that the group I walk with, they’re a group of people with a huge range of skills. I think that’s one of the great things about walking, you can be together as equals within an enormous number and enormousness range of people, and it’s a great equality.

The way the walking works is there will be a walk, and there’ll be coffee at the end of the walk, and at the end of coffee someone will say “Has anyone been to Mt Hayfield?”, or “I want to go to Borneo, and do the death march,” and I just recently came back from the Bungle Bungles, and to find places in Australia that I didn’t know existed, that were just so beautiful, and just so stunning, I was in awe for days.

Every coffee leads to another walk, and every walk leads to more contacts and more connections.

It was 2003, and I had decided to do the Kodaka Track. It was a fundraiser for work, and it came at just the right time, because I got very unfit over the last twenty or so years, and I was significantly overweight, and I knew that if I was going to do the Kodaka Track I would have to walk, I’d have to train. Doing the Kokoda with people, who six months before could barely get out of bed, and wouldn’t get out of bed, to see them reach a level of fitness, and to finish the track, and that sheer moment of joy, that’s always a moment of great inspiration.

Walking SA Board member Ben Trewren has been successful in receiving a Churchill Fellowship

Walking SA Board member Ben Trewren has been successful in receiving a Churchill FellowshipToday the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust has awarded $3.1 million worth of Churchill Fellowships to 112 Australians. One of the recipients is our very own Walking SA Board member Ben Trewren, being awarded the Terry Lavender Scholarship. This scholarship provides opportunities for South Australians to investigate ways to develop, improve, manage, and promote outdoor recreational trails and pursuits in South Australia.

The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust’s aim is to provide an opportunity for Australians to travel overseas to conduct research in their chosen field that is not readily available in Australia. The Trust was established in 1965 to honour the memory of Sir Winston Churchill, and fulfil his wish for people from all walks of life to travel the world to gain new knowledge and share ideas and insights. Ten South Australians were awarded a fellowship.

Ben’s project will allow him to research how engaging people in shared trails can assist in building the outdoor community. Ben hope’s to honour Terry’s legacy by harnessing this opportunity to uncover new ideas, attitudes and implementation strategies to build the profile/useability of outdoor recreation trails for all types of users. Ben will be travelling to New Zealand, USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Switzerland and Netherlands.

Find out more about the project in Ben’s presentation at our AGM at 6:30pm Thursday 11 October 2018.

New Position Statements by Walking SA: The Green Man; Walking Safely to School; Quality Footpaths

Our vision here at Walking SA’s is to see more people walking more often. We’ve recently developed three new Position Statements on a range of issues affecting people walking for recreation, health, or transport.

Over coming months we’ll be releasing more.

The Green Man: Improving pedestrian signal phasing at intersections and other signalised crossing points

Walking SA calls for the development of state-wide pedestrian traffic signal guidelines.
Walking SA calls for councils to review pedestrian signal phasing at intersections and crossing points in busy pedestrian areas, in order to reduce pedestrian wait times.


Enable and encourage children to walk and cycle safely to school

Walking SA encourages the government to develop an integrated active travel strategy that includes boosting of funds for implementing the Way2Go program in every school in SA.


Quality footpaths: Pedestrian infrastructure that encourages people to walk

We need a pedestrian environment that encourages and not discourages people to walk to local destinations. Footpaths are fundamental to people’s ability to walk about in urban areas including to and from public transport. The quality of the pedestrian environment indicates much we value walking in our society. Indeed, it is a key marker on how civilized and sophisticated a society is.

Streets for People strategy to upgrade Hart St, Semaphore

Work began yesterday on converting Hart Street, a four lane arterial road, into a much more pedestrian friendly street, using the Streets for People approach. Hart Street links Semaphore and Port Adelaide. It will be converted from two lanes in each direction to one lane, with additional landscaping and a separated bike lane.

The project will create a walkable environment, with better access to community facilities for everyone. With an enhanced look and feel of Hart Street, a healthy, friendly neighbourhood will be created. The removal of surplus traffic lanes will create an appropriate, balanced road environment for everyone.

As well as having fewer lanes to cross, pedestrians will benefit from a speed limit reduction from 60 to 50km/h, kerb extensions and median refuges.

Read more at infrastructure.sa.gov.au. View a detailed diagram.