What are we talking about?

Last week we launched #ShareYourMoves, a summer ‘campaign’ to encourage people to share photos, videos and stories about what kind of physical movement they do, day to day.

The campaign is a conversation starter, an invitation to think about what’s important to us as we find ways to increase our wellbeing through movement. Let’s face it, who isn’t up for a wellbeing boost?

We’re finally at the stage of easing out of lockdown restrictions and things are looking up, but none of us are the same people we were on the twenty-second of March last year. Let’s take a moment to acknowledge that, and remind ourselves how well we’ve all done. Really, take a minute. I might not know you, but I know you’ve had real challenges this last year. You’ve done well.

In our team at Live and Move, we’ve had some sobering statistics come in over the last few weeks and months, both from our own Live and Move surveys and national ones, about how much physical movement people are managing to get into their daily or weekly routines.

What’s changed?

There’s been a marked decrease over the last year in the amount of movement people are doing. Many of us have been on furlough or working remotely, which has given some the opportunity to get outdoors more in their local area and increase their ‘moves’. That’s not the case for everyone, though.

There’s also inequality in the ‘levels of physical activity’ when you look at society in groups. This isn’t always the way to look at things, but when we see that women’s activity levels are even further away from men’s than before, when we see ethnically diverse communities have been even more affected by the pandemic when it comes to staying active – we worry. We should worry. We’re not going to apologise for worrying, or for saying it as it is. But we’re not going to sit still, either.

Why?

So why are activity levels reducing, when we see so many great media stories like Joe Wicks’ live classes and local workplace work-outs on zoom?

Tell us!

Some of us have been isolated in our homes for over a year. Some have been trying to juggle work and children and have barely had time think about ‘what’s for dinner’. Some have lost their usual ways of being active with friends. Some of us (holding my hands up, here) have simply dropped out of routines that we know make us feel good.

My labrador passed away last spring and I ended up getting a new dog to force myself to keep walking every day. Not an option for everyone, getting a dog. So what else can be done to build habits for more movement?

There are a lot of absolute gems cropping up. People have found new ways to arrange walking groups, activity classes and social get-togethers; communities have bound themselves together to look after each other and found fun in organised activities that might not have happened otherwise; children have reimagined games and learned to miss school… there’s so much going on in Exeter and Cranbrook, and at Live and Move we want to know what people are up to and how they are getting moving!

Join in the conversation

So here we are: tentatively tiptoeing out of a pandemic, blinking in the surprising sunlight in-between downpours, wondering what’s next for our lifestyles after a year of introspection and sometimes a stark re-shuffling of priorities.

We’re in no doubt at Live and Move that more movement brings more health and more happiness, if we find ways to move that are fun for us and fit our own routines. Knowing this, and knowing that we want to facilitate more movement for more people across Exeter and Cranbrook communities, we want to find out what that movement looks like for you – or what it might look like in the future.

Some people go running across our hilly landscape, others go on whispering minibeast adventures with the grandchildren. Some people get active at a skate park, others go for a walk with friends instead of making a phone call.

Whatever your ‘moves’ are, we want to know about them. We invite you to think about what you are doing, day to day, that adds to your moves, and join in with #ShareYourMoves social media or by getting in touch with us.

Let’s get talking about how we feel about physical activity, and how we can use movement to step out of the pandemic and into greater wellness.