The start of a new school year is an awesome time to form new healthier habits - like walking to school!
The health-buzz around offices these days is more walking, less sitting and this idea is based on sound science. There is a reason why CEOs of the world’s most successful corporations add walking meetings into their daily routine and it’s really quite simple: Walking boosts creative thinking.
These findings also apply to kids. International studies have shown children who walk to school arrive more alert and ready for learning compared to those who were driven. Walking also reduces stress, which is fantastic if your child feels nervous about starting up a new school year, or has anxious tendencies in general.
Besides boosting creative thought and reducing stress, the extra few minutes of fresh air and exercise is a great way to add in some daily physical activity and lay the foundation for healthy attitudes towards physical fitness.
Another added bonus: Walking a familiar route provides great life experience and cultivates healthy independence. If you start out walking together, the daily experience on the route to school will give both you and your child the confidence they need when they are ready to tackle the walk alone.
We know what you’re thinking: How do you overcome obstacles like bad weather, time pressures and safety concerns? Rain, snow or cold is no excuse not to walk - invest in a fun, colourful umbrella, some great rain boots, a long raincoat and warm winter jacket. Time issues can be a concern in the morning, and safety is always top-of-mind, but a neighbourhood walking group can tackle both problems at once: Walking together makes everyone safer and more visible to cars, and if you still feel like an adult should walk with the kids, you can arrange to take turns with other parents in the group to minimize the impact on your work schedule.
So give it a shot! It takes two weeks to create a habit, so give it an honest try for the month of September and let us know how it goes!