My best friend and I had a routine set for the evenings. We would venture out of our homes and just start walking. Sometimes to another friend’s house, sometimes to a neighbourhood card shop or sometimes for a round of the entire colony before coming back home. The amazing thing was, our routes were never pre-planned and we did not even discuss where we were heading to. It was a spontaneous reaction of understanding each other over the years that we had developed. And with little words spoken, we always treaded on the same route walking in synchronous harmony.
The benefit of such a walk every day was that even though my best friend and I are miles apart now, she is still as close to me as she was then. The walks created a lifetime bond that has not weakened in spite of our living in separate countries.
Okay, perhaps I am giving a lot of credit to walking for helping me maintain my relationship with my best friend. There were a lot many other things too that helped: same age, same habits, same likes, same dislikes etc. etc. but what is an important point to note is, that those 15-30 minutes we spend every day were invaluable in sharing lots of laughs and joys together.
Modern families today lack that time of joyful company. Parents leave home early in the morning for work and come back late in the evening or sometimes at night. The kids go to school, come back, do their homework, watch TV and go to sleep. Apart from a weekend, there is no other day in the week when the members of the family actually spend time together as a family rejoicing in each other’s company.
When what you do every day is for your family, shouldn’t it be important that the same family gets a few moments of undivided attention every day? A family walk can come in handy to do just that.
Walking is easy. You do not have to teach anyone to do it. A family walk also does not need to be a well planned out route. It can just be on your front yard lawn, the street opposite your home, the neighbourhood park or for the lucky few the club walking track. The more important thing is to make it a habitual action post dinner or pre-breakfast.
How will walking help?
From the health point of view,
- Regular walking lowers cholesterol level.
- It prevents high blood pressure that can lead to heart problems. If you already suffer from High BP walking can help bring it down.
- Diabetic patients are usually recommended by doctors to walk to make your body stronger and enhance body’s capacity to process sugar.
- Helps reduce weight.
- Helps reduce stress level.
- Walking helps increase your endurance level and stamina.
- Regular walk also helps in strengthening the body immune system making you less susceptible to infections.
From the family point of view,
- Walking and talking can help your partner and you get the companionship time you miss with the daily grind.
- Parents can bond with kids. Grandparents can bond with grandkids.
- It can turn into a source of entertainment apart from the TV.
- If someone in the family is suffering from a health problem and needs to walk, the family support can motivate him constantly.
- It can help you discover new places near your home.
- It can bring out the old stories, childhood memories, office drama, school troubles that were welled up inside the heart for a long time.
- It can give you a chance to inculcate good values to your kids including the habit of walking.
Unarguably, walking with your family is that jewel of an exercise that can give you fitness, bonding and lots of moments of joy all at the same time.
Image Credit mescon via cc/Flickr