BEST alumnus Arthur Orsini has been busy these days creating innovating new programs that encourage kids to walk to school. Arthur thinks that for too long we’ve aimed Walk to School programs at busy but well-meaning teachers and parents. We’ve been under-valuing our most receptive audience: Kids! A new family walking resource called Anchors Away has been designed to suit 10- to 12-year-old student leaders. It will help to inform children so that they can make the health, fitness and environmental benefits that walking brings a priority to their parents. Through skill-building and the adaptation of tools, young leaders can elevate walking to school to a priority status within their families. Anchors Awayjust launched on StartSomeGood. Sign-up and share this link so that your community will benefit from the student-led Walk to School movement! For more information visit the Urbanthinkers blog.
DO IT OFTEN AND FEEL THE DIFFERENCE Cycling is a simple way to stay fit and healthy at any age, or to shed those extra winter pounds. At a relaxed pace you can bike 3.5 km in just 15 minutes and burn off some calories. It’s so easy it almost feels like cheating. Thirty minutes of moderate cycling per day can deliver these significant health benefits: 50% reduced risk of developing coronary heart disease, adult diabetes, and obesity 30% reduced risk of developing hypertension Overall improved health (with no gym fees!) EASY ON YOUR BOD Cycling is easier on the body than many aerobic sports. Unlike jogging, cycling is low-impact and doesn’t put stress on your knees. In fact, as long as you use correct gearing, cycling can gently strengthen your knees and keep them limber. GOOD FOR YOUR HEAD Regular exercise can help you manage stress better, and the sunshine and fresh air can boost your mood and energy level. Many people find that cycling is as good for their mental well-being as for their physical health. BETTER FOR YOUR LUNGS You are actually exposed to less pollution cycling along a busy road than if you’re trapped inside a car. Even better, many cycling routes are a pleasant distance away from heavy traffic, and pollution levels drop off dramatically even a few metres away from a busy road. GETTING STARTED If you’re not used to cycling, you might experience some muscle fatigue and sleepiness at first. You’ll be surprised by how quickly your muscles get stronger, the hills seem to shrink, and your energy level rises. CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR If you’re not used to moderate levels of physical activity or have a family history of heart problems, consult your doctor before you start cycling. SPINNING IS THE SECRET Riding in too high a gear (when it’s “hard” to pedal) leads to muscle pain and knee injuries. “Spinning” – that is, staying in lower (“easier”) gear – will allow you to ride comfortably through the years.