Getting active on Trust land

A new report published today by the All Party Commission on Physical Activity has highlighted the need for greater physical activity amongst the UK population.

With news that physical inactivity accounts for nearly one-fifth of premature deaths in the UK and rising, Rob Joules, the National Trust’s Sports Partnership Manager, explains how the Trust is working with partner organisations to encourage more people to take part in sport.

“This new report highlights the growing epidemic of inactivity and the serious dangers this Visitors enjoying a game of beach volleyball at Shell Bay, Studland, Dorset. Chris Laceyposes for our children’s health. We’re working with a variety of partners to help create greater entry level sporting opportunities, which we believe are the key to encouraging more people to get active. By working with these organisations we’re focusing on developing fun, social activities that will help people lead more active lifestyles.

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Trail Running with the National Trust

TR14 low resA new magazine has featured the best places to run in National Trust landscape. Our Sports Partnership Manager- Rob Joules – tells us more about the new sport of ‘trail running’ and what the article is all about.

With over 250,000 hectares of open countryside and 710 miles of dramatic coastline to choose from, our places offer an incredible variety of running terrain. Despite having better views than the gym, many people who go walking on our land would never consider running there. This is changing, however, and the word is out that we have some iconic places to run in the great outdoors.

Trail running is all about running off-road and finding quiet accessible routes, however this can often be hard if you don’t know where to look. The advantages of trail running in my opinion is that it’s more varied, interesting, relaxing, and better for your body as your muscles get a more varied workout than on the road or a treadmill. Add in the scenery, wildlife and the sense of a journey and you have a truly wonderful experience. Its uplifting and refreshing and a great way to escape from the stress and strains of everyday life.

We’ve recently been working with Trail Running Magazine to highlight some of the best routes that are on your doorstep. The June/July edition of the magazine is all about finding wild trails near to large urban areas, and it starts with a nine page feature spread about running at Malham Tarn in Yorkshire. The article is packed with stories about nature, wildlife and exploring the outdoors. There’s also lots about what you’ll see when running in the area from Chris Gibbons, one of the rangers who joined us on the shoot, and a great section about the Bird’s-eye primrose and the Curlew. The magazine also has top-tips about running in the area, accompanied with some iconic photos.

The latest edition of Trail Running Magazine highlights 20 National Trust trails, each one with a photo and a short description and also has a further 10 detailed routes which are accompanied by a map, a description of the route, an elevation chart and one of our ranger’s notes.

At the National Trust we want to help everyone make the most of our incredible open-air spaces. We’re delighted to work with publications like Trail Running Magazine to help promote our outdoor experiences and to help us inspire people to get out and explore our great outdoors.

The team on-site for the magazine shoot

The team on-site for the magazine shoot

You’re never more than 40 minutes away from a National Trust location and with running routes on offer in beautiful surroundings there has never been a better time to get healthy.  Why not join one of our beginner running groups at Morden Hall, Woolacombe, Knowle, Kingston Lacy, Kedleston Hall or Tyntesfield.

If you want to run regularly on the weekend how about Parkrun? Parkrun is a free, weekly, 5km (three-mile) run, open to all ages and abilities, where participants compete against themselves rather than each other to better their own time. This programme has been introduced at six Trust sites and is set to rise as interest in trail running increases.

Six National Trust parkruns

1.                   Plym Valley, Plymouth

2.                   Wimpole Estate, Cambridge

3.                   Killerton, Devon

4.                   Sheringham Park, Norfolk

5.                   Tredegar House, Newport.

6.                   The Leas, South Shields.

If you fancy a bit more of a challenge then we also organise iconic races from 10k’s, to half marathons and full marathons. Eg. The Grasmere Gallop, the Durham Coast Half Marathon, Mad Jacks 5 at Attingham, Hadrian’s Wall Half marathon, Bradenham Bolt 10km, Kingston Lacy 10km, Wenlock Edge Marathon and many more.

I look forward to seeing you out there!