by Nick Clarke
What is active travel? Simply put, it involves using your body to make the journey. It’s an important part of leading a healthier lifestyle and decarbonising city transport, and the UK government has set out a cycling and walking plan for England to support this. So what are some of the benefits and why should you take part?
Walking is an easy way to stay healthy and even easier to fit into your lifestyle. Try walking to local shops instead of driving, circling the block after work, taking the stairs instead of the lift, doing regular walks with a friend, or getting off public transport a stop early. You can walk almost anywhere, so by grabbing your shoes and heading out, you’ll see benefits including:
Cycling is one the quickest and healthiest forms of active travel. People around the UK are already seeing positive health benefits, with local governments supporting us with plans to convert large portions of roads into cycle super-highways. Our tips and advice can help you play your part in protecting the planet through active travel.
As you can imagine, there are many benefits to picking up a pair of wheels, which aren’t just about reducing carbon emissions. Sophie, assistant programme manager at Energy Saving Trust, says: "I enjoy the effort vs reward ration of uphill/downhill - there's no greater feeling than conquering a hill and then zooming down it at the end with the wind in your hair."
Some of the other benefits that come from cycling are:
The great thing about picking up a bike is that you can cycle straight away. If you want to get the most out of your cycling adventures, check out some of these resources:
If you want to find some new or interesting cycle routes, there are plenty of places to look. Lots of cities have cycling-specific maps showing dedicated cycleways, so there’s no limit to how far your bike can take you.
We expect to see many more people joining this sustainable lifestyle in the coming months, so now is a great time to find your feet and make the most of walking or cycling.