FHealth Bite: ree activities in B&H It was recently announced that free swimming for children
(aged 11 and under) will continue for 2011/12, in a scheme which will continue to be joint-funded by NHS Brighton & Hove and the City Council. This is great news, but it made us
wonder what other activities might be available for FREE in Brighton & Hove.
Health walks The Healthwalks programme offers short, guided social walks within
the Brighton & Hove city boundary, including a 4 mile waymarked route along the seafront. Go to www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/healthwalks
for more details of the routes.
Ramblers For longer or more challenging walks, go to the website for the Brighton &
Hove Ramblers (www.bahr.org.uk
cocktails are fine on occasion – but these sugar and alcohol concoctions are full of calories – so try to keep to a minimum. If you find you have over indulged a bit on the alcohol, drink plenty of water to rehydrate yourself. Alternate an alcoholic drink with a
non-alcoholic drink. Try a white wine spritzer mixed
with soda water. Better choices: opt for light beer,
white/rose wine, or even a spirit with a low calorie mixer such as light tonic or diet coke – but remember, too many of these will still lead to too many calories and too many alcohol units.
Sunshine Vitamin We get most of our vitamin D from the sunshine – not food. Vitamin D is essential to help you absorb enough calcium from your diet for strong bones and teeth. Expose skin for about 20 minutes (but longer for older people or those with darker skin) before applying sunscreen. Aim to do this between 10am to 3pm (when the suns UV rays are at their strongest), on most days during April to September, this should ensure that you make enough vitamin D to last you the whole year. So in the summer’s sun
(hopefully!) eat, drink and stay healthy – don’t forget to do some exercise and remember the sunscreen. Enjoy! By Kathryn Morris, Dietitian, Food Partnership
Runners A friendly 5K run around Hove Park starts at 9.00am each Saturday. It’s not
competitive just you against the clock. www.parkrun.org.uk/brighton/home
It’s free to join but you need to register before your first run.
Journey On A website providing free walking maps and cycle routes, including a Twitten
map for residents of Patcham, Hollingbury and Withdean. A 'Twitten' is a local Sussex word which means cut-through or short-cut and is usually a narrow path between two walls or hedges, usually linking one street with another (making it quick and easy to walk around). The Twitten map is available to download and from libraries in Hollingbury and Patcham. As well as a range of walks within the city, Journey On has some excellent walks in the South Downs that you can catch a bus to go to. So if you fancy a walk on Devil’s Dyke or round Stanmer Park this is a good place to start.
Free outdoor gyms Hove Park and Vale Park in Portslade have both had a facelift and now
sport flash new fitness equipment anyone can use for free, including chest and leg presses, pull-down challenges, sit-up benches, air skiers, cross trainers, pull-up stations, push-and-pull stations, leg lifts and double air walkers. If you’re not a regular gym bunny, the equipment comes with information signs to show you how to use it. Pumping iron in the park can also be combined with bouldering, where you scramble over a giant artificial rock. The facilities are designed to offer a range of cardiovascular, weight-loss and core stability exercises for different body types and levels of fitness.
Volunteering opportunities Become a volunteer gardener in gardens around Brighton & Hove (see
) or look to the countryside for opportunities to improve your health & well-being – for example, try a green gym in Portslade or become a volunteer shepherd in the downlands. Children can join the Brighton & Hove Junior Ranger scheme, an opportunity for young people in the city (aged 8-14 years) to take part in organised environmentally-themed activities in parks and green spaces.
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