A new campaign is asking people in Hull to make a simple pledge to ‘move more’. Aimed at getting people to increase their activity levels, a new website gethullactive.co.uk lets people share their own pledges – from taking the kids to the park to cycling to work or getting out and about with the dog.
Some residents have already shared their experiences and the accompanying message that small changes can make a big difference. Alan Bowmaster seized the chance lockdown gave him to spend more time on his allotment and found he was losing weight, feeling fitter and moving more simply by doing something he enjoyed. Pat, 78, lost fitness due to caring for and sadly losing her husband and then herself enduring cancer and chemotherapy. After joining a weight management group she began walking and challenged herself to take new routes and go a little further. She has made friends, lost weight and found walking ‘gives her purpose and keeps her fit’.
Claire Farrow, Behaviour Change Lead at Hull City Council, said: “This isn’t about getting people to buy expensive equipment, embark on intense fitness regimes or suddenly start running a 10k. We’re asking people to think about a change which suits them and fits in with their lifestyle.
“It could be cycling to work, or taking a lunchtime walk if you’re working at home. It might be walking to the shops regularly, taking a longer route to the bus stop, getting to the park with the kids or the dog. All of us can find opportunities to move more and it may not feel like much but small changes can make a big difference.
“Regular exercise – which includes walking, gardening, cleaning and all sorts of other day-to-day activities – can help you manage weight, reduce risk of conditions including heart disease and joint problems and improve your mood”.
Cllr Gwen Lunn, Portfolio Holder for Public Health, said: “We can all make a pledge; it doesn’t have to be a big ambitious target. Deciding to walk to school, work or the shops gets you out and about, can lift your mood and benefits the environment too. Each of us has different things that motivate us and different pressures in our lives. The #MoveMore campaign is about recognising that and encouraging people to find something they can do within their daily routine.
“The website is a great place to find inspiration from others’ pledges, make your own and find opportunities in your area, from walking groups to allotments, exercise groups you can take your baby to and free apps”.