With National Walk to Work Day just a month away, health industry and experts are now, more than ever, encouraging businesses and individuals to step up their support of regular walking to improve the health of Australians.
Earlier this week, the Government’s Preventative Health Task Force suggested tax cuts for those of us who take regular exercise seriously, and now the AMA has also put its foot down and issued a doctor’s prescription to each and every Australian.
The script is simple. A 30 minute dose of walking commenced on National Walk to Work Day Friday October 2, repeat daily, 365 days a year.
The prescription, a key element of the launch of National Walk to Work Day 2009, asks that every Australian walk all or part of the way to work on Friday October 2. If you can’t walk to work, include a walk at lunchtime or walk to your first appointment.
Health Minister Nicola Roxon was quoted during the week as saying "There's a great opportunity for workplaces to be much more heavily involved in looking after the health of their employees," (News Ltd 2 September 2009).
Walk to Work Day is the perfect opportunity for businesses and individuals to put their best foot forward and step up their commitment to improving the nation’s health. Organisations from all walks of industry and business are being called upon to join some of the biggest companies in Australia and register for National Walk to Work Day. Registering as a Corporate Ambassador is a simple and easy way for organisations to demonstrate their support for better health and cleaner air.
Recent data from the Federal Health Department notes that 72% of Australians have low exercise levels and a shocking 61.3% of adults in Australia are overweight or obese.
Federal Vice President of the AMA, Dr Steve Hambleton said the AMA encourages all Australians to take this script very seriously.
"It is just as important as a script for heart medication, anti-depressants, diabetic medication, or anti-cancer medication. If you follow my walking script as prescribed and take it with a healthy diet, it will reduce the risk that your doctor will have reason to write you these other scripts, later in life.
“Walk to Work Day is a wonderful way to kick start a healthy habit in all of us – one that can be sustained throughout the year. You don’t need to buy any equipment to walk to work; it’s free and easy for most of us.
“If walking all the way to work is impractical, get off the train or bus a stop early and walk the rest of the way, park the car a few blocks away and walk or walk at lunch time.”
As well as organisations getting behind National Walk to Work Day, individuals are being invited to register as a Walking Class Hero to go in the draw to win a Walking Holiday in New Zealand.