Businesses urged to 'fit a walk into work'

Businesses are being urged to put their best foot forward in order to improve the health of their employees, by Winchester Business Health Advisory Group and Winchester City Council, as part of the Winchester Workplace Walk Initiative being launched on Thursday 25 May 2006 at the Wessex Hotel in Winchester.

Special packs containing a selection of walking routes have been developed as part of the 'fit a walk into work' initiative to encourage people who work in Winchester to take exercise as part of their normal daily routine.

Launching the initiative Richard Rogers, Chair of the Winchester Business Health Advisory Group said "Half of our waking hours are spent at work and many jobs involve long periods of sitting. Taking the opportunity to walk during breaks and actively travelling to and from work can contribute to achieving the recommended healthy goal of 30 minutes of moderate activity a day at least five times a week. "

The walks have been developed by The Health Promotion Service of Mid Hampshire Primary Care Trust after evidence shows that physical activity is not only good for health but also good for business. Physically active employees take 27% fewer days of sick leave, report greater enjoyment of their work, increased concentration, improved cooperation and rapport with colleagues, which ultimately leads to improved productivity.

The 'Fit a walk into work' packs contain useful safe walking tips and pose a step challenge, throwing down the gauntlet of achieving 10000 steps a day!

The initiative has been supported by Winchester Community Prison, Hampshire County Council, Winchester & Eastleigh Healthcare NHS Trust, Mid Hampshire Primary Care Trust, Winchester City Council and Denplan Ltd who have all contributed time and resources to the development of the pack.

Staff from the sponsor organisations will benefit from free packs but other businesses will be able to buy packs for £1.00 from the Winchester Tourist Information Centre, and other locations which will be listed at .

For more information on the initiative contact Lee Dawson, Health promotion Specialist for Physical Activity at Mid Hampshire Primary Care Trust on 863511 ext 3244 or