We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, EVERYONE has a role to play in building a more active Europe. Today, let’s discuss what cities can do to support and encourage #BeActive residents.
Let’s have a look at Manchester, in the UK. In January, 2014 Manchester was dubbed “the laziest city in Britain” with 40% of its residents doing less than half an hour of exercise a month! When you consider the fact that the WHO recommends 150 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity per week, it is clear Manchester’s population was in trouble. However, instead of standing by and continuing to contribute to the inactivity crisis, the city had already been developing a plan to get people moving again, through the “Greater Manchester Moving” campaign. As part of the city’s effort to become one of the “fastest growing self-sustainable city regions by 2020”, it recognised the impact that inactivity posed to the health and life expectancy of its citizens and its economy.
They offered opportunities to city dwellers to run and cycle by creating more active and sustainable environments and promoting them. They developed programs for everyone – from children to seniors. A good example is their BetterbyCycle programme which aims to deliver cycle training, recreational cycling, mass participation events, awareness campaigns and capacity building within inactive communities, workplaces and schools!
Quite impressive, right? These are the types of initiatives that decision-makers can support to encourage residents to get moving.
Does your city have a #BeActive success story? We’d love to hear how your local authorities and decision-makers have helped provide you with more opportunities to engage in sport and physical activity.