You are here

Woodland walks could help older people

Woodland walks could help older people
13th December 2010

A simple woodland walk could be beneficial to the mental and physical health of older people, according to Forestry Commission Wales.

The organisation has instituted a five-week pilot scheme and says it will be urging doctors to prescribe exercise in the great outdoors.

Richard Davies, the Forestry Commission Wales’ policy and programme adviser, said that there was evidence of reductions in injuries due to old-age as well as reductions in incidences of some cancers and greater mobility.

"Currently, health professionals tend to refer people to indoor activities, such as gyms, rather than to the outdoors," he said.

"This is generally because of a lack of awareness of the additional benefits exercising in the outdoors – especially in woodland – can deliver."

Meanwhile, scientists from the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania found that walking six miles per week can cut the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.

It was also found that individuals with Alzheimer's should walk five miles per week to slow its progression.

Find the nearest Barchester nursing home