Walk in groups to keep exercise goals on track

January 29, 2018, Anglia Ruskin University
Walk in groups to keep exercise goals on track
Credit: Anglia Ruskin University

People may be more likely to stick to taking exercise if they walk in groups, according to a paper published in the International Journal of Technology Assessment in Health Care.

The research, led by Anglia Ruskin University, also found that group walking plays a part in improved physical activity and better quality of life.

The review analysed 18 studies of physically healthy adults walking in groups compared with walking alone or not at all and found that people who had undertaken group walking were more likely to have kept up the exercise by the end of the study, which was an average of six months later.

The authors also found that in five of the seven studies that measured quality of life outcomes, those who walked in groups showed significantly improved scores compare with those who did not, while in the other two studies there was no significant difference.

The World Health Organisation recommends that adults undertake 150 minutes of moderate per week. However, only 67% of men and 55% of women in the UK meet these guidelines. Dropout rates for exercise initiatives are also known to be high.

Lead author Professor Catherine Meads, of Anglia Ruskin University, said: "Walking in groups is a safe and inexpensive intervention that can be delivered easily and successfully in the community.

"At a time when we are being encouraged to meet guidelines, a large proportion of the public fail to do so. Our review found that people may be more likely to exercise if they have social support.

"Walking in groups tended to increase life satisfaction and may also improve social connectedness."

Explore further: Walking below minimum recommended levels linked to lower mortality risk compared to inactivity

More information: Catherine Meads et al, A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW OF GROUP WALKING IN PHYSICALLY HEALTHY PEOPLE TO PROMOTE PHYSICAL ACTIVITY, International Journal of Technology Assessment in Health Care (2018). DOI: 10.1017/S0266462317001088

Related Stories

Walking below minimum recommended levels linked to lower mortality risk compared to inactivity

October 19, 2017
A new study concludes that walking has the potential to significantly improve the public's health. It finds regular walking, even if not meeting the minimum recommended levels, is associated with lower mortality compared ...

Fewer than half US adults get enough exercise

August 7, 2012
Fewer than half of US adults get enough physical activity for their health, said a US government study released Tuesday.

Quality of life for patients with advanced cancer improved through walking

February 17, 2017
Walking for just 30 minutes three times per week could improve the quality of life for those with advanced cancer, a new study published in the BMJ Open journal has found.

The magic pill is exercise

September 11, 2017
As people age, walking and balance become more of a challenge, but also more of a necessity. Older adults who aren't physically active increase their risk of illness, hospitalization and disability. Just how much exercise ...

Research finds dog walkers motivated by happiness, not health

August 30, 2017
It appears to be a case of 'do what makes you happy' for people who regularly walk their dogs.

Simple walking program provides physical and mental benefits to dialysis patients

December 1, 2016
In a recent study, a simple exercise program carried out at home improved dialysis patients' walking performance and quality of life. The findings appear in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology ...

Recommended for you

China's doctor shortage prompts rush for AI health care

September 20, 2018
Qu Jianguo, 64, had a futuristic medical visit in Shanghai as he put his wrist through an automated pulse-taking machine and received the result within two minutes on a mobile phone—without a doctor present.

Time to ban the sale of energy drinks to children, says senior doctor

September 19, 2018
It's time to bring in laws to ban the sale of caffeinated energy drinks to children and young people in England to tackle the twin epidemics of obesity and mental health problems, argues Professor Russell Viner, President ...

For-profit hospitals correlated with higher readmission rates

September 19, 2018
Patients who receive care in a for-profit hospital are more likely to be readmitted than those who receive care in nonprofit or public hospitals, according to a new study published by University of Illinois at Chicago researchers.

Sugar content of most supermarket yogurts well above recommended threshold

September 18, 2018
A comprehensive survey of ingredients in yogurts highlights high sugar levels in many—particularly organic yogurts and those marketed towards children.

Research confronts 'yucky' attitudes about genetically engineered foods

September 18, 2018
Is a non-browning apple less "natural" than non-fat milk? In one case, people have injected something into apple DNA to prevent it from turning brown after it's cut. In the other, people used technology to remove something ...

Your teen is underestimating the health risks of vaping

September 17, 2018
Teens today are more reluctant to smoke cigarettes than their counterparts nearly three decades ago, according to a study released this summer. But parents should hold their collective sigh of relief. The study, carried out ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.