Present Manageable Physical Challenges

Gradually increase the physical challenge associated with walks. Seeing their physical capabilities improve will provide participants with a sense of achievement, as well as physical health benefits. Here are some ways to gradually increase the physical challenge level of your walks.

Increase your speed.

  • Check out “Leading an Inclusive Group—Pacing” to get an idea of the relative speed of your group.
  • Time yourself on one route, and then revisit the route several weeks later with a group goal of beating your previous time, even by a small amount.

Take less frequent or shorter breaks.

  • Encourage participants to rest whenever necessary, but with a goal of decreasing the total amount of time they spend resting.

Extend the length of your walks.

  • Tacking on an extra five minutes of walking each week is a reasonable goal.

Tackle more challenging terrain.

  • Walking on more rustic trails can present challenges, such as uneven or muddy walking surfaces, and obstacles like fallen trees or rocks.
  • Take routes with more frequent or steeper hills.

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