Oh look, it's International Walk to School Month. Not long ago 70% of kids walked to school, now it's less than 46%. Let's take a look at that.
I used to struggle with why parents fought their way through traffic and parked dangerously just so they could take their kids to school in a car. Now I'm a mum I know why.
1. If you have to rush off to work after school drop off, then you don't have time to walk. Not to mention those days when your kid won't get up and takes ages to dress.
2. It's a day ending in 'y' so it's probably raining, followed by snow, and then the entire country will get flooded. Walking your kid to school in the British weather is not fun and if their school shoes and uniform gets wet they're uncomfortable all day.
3. There's so much stuff to take. Water bottles, lunchboxes, school bag, PE kit. Not to mention umbrellas, coats and hats. It's too much hassle, especially if you have two or three kids.
This type of lifestyle of rushing around can cause stress and serious health risks such as high blood pressure. Find out more about the different symptoms of high blood pressure and what types of blood pressure tablets may be suitable to you.
However, I do walk my kid to school and I feel the hassle is worth it. Here's why.
1. It's good one-to-one time. My son talks about the day ahead, his friends and his worries. I don't get this conversation out of him at home.
2. Walking is good for you. My son wakes in the fresh air (as do I) it provides a good oxygenated start to the morning. It's thought that walking each day adds seven years to your life. My 15-minute each-way school walk adds up to an hour and helps to fight the fact I sit in front of my PC all day. Remember your posture and wear flat shoes to get the full benefit.
3. I've seen fights over parking spaces, I'm not kidding. Walking, taking the bus, or riding a bike avoids all that horror. Plus all those short runs will damage your car battery and the environment.
4. Walking each day helps you teach safe practices like walking on pavements, crossing roads and the dangers of cars. It's reinforced twice a day, 5 days a week. What a great way to instil some traffic sense.
5. You'll meet other parents and have a social life much like before you were pregnant. Parties, wine evenings, coffees all with mums and dads you met on the school run. I've also found a local plumber, electrician and car mechanic this way, and I've discovered our local vicar sells his duck's eggs - and they taste amazing.
6. My son is better behaved after a walk; this surely means his behaviour is better in school, though it's Parents Evening next week, so I'll come back to you on that one...
Being more active would lead a healthier lifestyle, reducing the risk of high blood pressure along with keeping your weight down. We can offer further advice on effective weight loss techniques. Visit our weight loss page for more.