Mall Walking is wonderful year round! If I lived closer to one I would do this all the time but I live out in the country. My friend does this every single day! Here are some great resources and tips below:
Walking is a great way to increase physical activity. It requires no special skills, costly equipment, or special clothing beyond comfortable walking shoes. Sometimes it is hard to find a safe place to walk, however, preventing a person from being physically active. For example, many neighborhoods lack sidewalks, have busy traffic, and sometimes are unsafe (e.g., crime, poor lighting, uneven surfaces). Weather can also play a role in someone’s decision to walk or not. But walking inside a shopping mall can solve many of these problems.
Mall walking offers a safe, free, comfortable, walker-friendly way for the public to be more physically active. A guide to establishing and improving mall walking programs was developed by the University of Washington’s Health Promotion Research Center (HPRC) and CDC(http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpao/aboutus/index.html) . Mall Walking: A Program Resource Guide(http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpao/docs/uwmallwalkingguideweb508tagged.pdf) explains how mall walking makes it easy to be physically active by providing:
- An indoor environment to avoid harsh weather
- Mall security staff and the presence of other walkers and shoppers
- Level ground, which can reduce the risk of trips and falls
- Company of fellow mall walkers
- Well-lit restrooms, access to free water fountains, and benches or places to sit and rest
Mall Walking: A Program Resource Guide is a great tool with strategies for established mall walking programs, and for groups and individuals who want to start and maintain a mall walking program. The guide also has information and examples for other locations in areas where a mall is not available, such as zoos, botanical gardens, and commercial spaces.
People who are physically active live longer and have a lower risk for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, depression, and some cancers. Improving spaces and having safe places to walk can help more people become physically active.
This guide is useful for mall managers and others promoting and improving places for people who have different physical abilities to benefit from physical activity.
Also, here is a book about mall walking. It is several years old but still a good one.. 🙂 Get it here: Mall Walking Madness
From the Back Cover
The ultimate insider’s guide to America’s latest fitness craze– mall walking!
Join Sara Donovan, founder and president of WalkSport America, the country’s largest mall walking group, and learn how you can become a part of the latest grassroots fitness movement that’s sweeping the nation– mall walking! Discover the insider tricks to help you lose weight quickly and easily, ease chronic pain and disability, scout out delicious freebies, and make dozens of new friends– all while tracking the latest sales in the dazzling clean comfort of a mall near you.
Let Sara show you all the ins and outs of finding the perfect mall, the most comfortable walking shoes, even the best buddy who can make you laugh and help you meet your goals at the same time. Watch the pounds melt off with Sara’s 8-week quick-start WalkSport Fit Forever Program, a unique plan that incorporates walking and nutrition and gets results for everyone from pregnant moms to (great)grandparents. Best of all, meet inspiring people from all over America and hear how they turned their social-hour workouts into life-changing fun!
See you at the mall!
Sara’s Top Five Reasons to Mall Walk:
1. It’s easy!
2. It’s free!
3. It’s safe!
4. It’s convenient!
5. It’s fun!
(…and did I mention the SHOPPING?)
Find your state here for the locations of mall walking by you!