for better mental health

The Mind Walk - Walking Safely

No matter where you will be doing The Mind Walk, we want to ensure you and your loved ones stay alert and remain safe when planning and walking your chosen route. We’ve put together some tips for how to plan your route in your own area whilst ensuring you are adhering to the current government guidelines during your walk.

Planning your route

When planning and walking your route, please first and foremost adhere to the current UK government guidelines for social distancing in your chosen area. You can find the most up to date guidelines for your area by referring to restrictions both in England and Wales. Also remember to check if there are any additional local restrictions in your area. This includes local lockdowns and restrictions imposed by the local authority for their places and spaces such as parks. (Please click here for local lockdown updates).

Choose a walking distance that feels suitable to you and your walking ability. We suggest for this to be up to the distance of a 10k walking route.

Find route inspiration

Walk4Life have a fantastic library of walks as well as ways to create your own route from your postcode.

National Trails also have a library of suggested walking routes and trails up and down the country ranging from gentle to moderate difficulty levels.

For London based walkers, TfL have some useful information about walking and a number of mapped out walking routes in London.

Forest Trails also offer a range of walking routes that are perfect for all ages with some particularly engaging route for families with young children.

Staying safe whilst walking

Be safe

Maintain good hygiene and social distancing. If you begin to show COVID-19 symptoms or have been in contact with anyone who has COVID-19, you must not take part in the walk and self-isolate.

Be considerate

Be sensitive to rural communities if considering travelling further from home to walk. Make sure to follow the Countryside Code – COVID-19 version (England and Wales) or Scottish Outdoor Access Code.

Social distance

The current government guidelines state that in England, a maximum of six people from different households and support bubbles can gather in a group. In Wales gatherings of up to 30 people are now permitted outdoors. But you should continue to maintain physical and social distancing from people outside your household, or extended household if you have formed one. This does not apply to areas under local lockdown.

Always keep a 2m distance where possible between you and other walkers. Be mindful of any areas in your walk where paths or routes could become narrow and keep social distancing measures in mind when navigating your route (e.g. walking single file down a narrow country lane or a short pavement).

Being prepared for your walk

Wear shoes that are comfortable to walk in that provide adequate support and do not cause blisters such as trainers or walking boots.

Pack a bag/small backpack with the essential items you may need whilst on your walk such as a bottle of water, energy snacks, sunscreen and/or light waterproof coat depending on the weather forecast for the day. Wearing layers that you can easily remove or put on to regulate your body temperature is important for staying comfortable.

Take photos during your walk and share them with the amazing Mind Walk community by using the hastag #themindwalk and tagging @themindcharity in your posts. You are part of a powerful movement for change and we walk with pride and visibility for better mental health.

Other ways to get involved

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