Following a successful pilot project in 2013, the easy walking programme Acorn Steps, based on the Isle of Wight, is now available for those interested in doing more walking, but who lack the confidence to get out by themselves.
This free programme, for adults and accompanied children, offers six weeks of gentle walks at a pace and gradient to suit the individual. Small groups, usually between two and ten participants, are lead by experienced walk leaders from The Footprint Trust. All staff are DBS-checked, first aid trained and are experienced in working with people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.
"People are treated as individuals with walks designed to suit them"
Potential clients have an informal initial assessment, to find out what their needs and requirements may be, then walks are designed which are suitable for them. They are matched with people with similar requirements, so need never feel they are having to 'run to catch up'.
NEW for this year are VERY GENTLE walks for people with long-term conditions who may wish to walk, but need to take it very easy. Please contact Acorn Steps for further details.
Last year, most people who started the programme were doing almost no exercise at all. But by the end of the course, the group walked 4 miles.
"I’m absolutely gobsmacked about how far I can actually walk"
As well as enjoying getting more active, meeting new people and going to new places, those who participated also noticed their mood lifting and confidence improving.
"I'm walking by myself now. I used to think I was the only one not in a couple, but now I don't even think about that and am enjoying looking around me at the sea, and sky...">
To join Acorn Steps, it is expected that:-
- People will be able to get themselves to the starting point of the walk
- People will commit to the full six weeks of the programme.
People can be professionally referred, or join up themselves.
For further details, contact Acorn Steps:-
Acorn Steps is delivered by Helen Stichbury, UKPHR registered public health practitioner no. PR0121, in conjunction with The Footprint Trust, an educational charity (registered charity no. 1106024, registered company no. 04587815).