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Active commuting can reduce your risk of serious conditions, says National Charity Partnership

Following research by the University of Glasgow published in the British Medical Journal which highlighted the association between commuting by cycle and walking and a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, the National Charity Partnership are encouraging more people to think about taking a more active route to work.

With around seven million people in the UK already living with heart and circulatory disease and over 4 million with Type 2 diabetes, these life-threatening conditions can be helped by being active regularly. The National Charity Partnership welcome this new research supporting active travel and public health initiatives that encourage these small steps to improve your health.

Matthew McKee, Prevention Programme Manager – Physical Activity, for the National Charity Partnership, said: “Our own research shows that lack of motivation and the price of fitness classes are two things that can stop people moving more – but it’s vital to get some form of exercise in order to look after your health. Active commuting can be a really easy way to incorporate physical activity into your daily routine, without costing a penny.

“In fact the study suggests that cycling to work for just two hours a week may significantly reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. However, even small changes such as cycling to the train station or getting off public transport a few stops earlier can all help towards improving your health and reducing this risk.”

As the weather gets warmer, the National Charity Partnership will be launching Beat the Street – a seven-week initiative that transforms towns into an interactive game with local people rewarded with points and prizes for getting moving. In 2016, over 145,000 people took part in Beat the Street and collectively travelled a massive 520,000 miles, embracing the competition and making a positive impact on their physical health. Beat the Street is a fun game that brings whole communities together and encourages families to get involved in active travel and maintain these habits long after the game has finished.

From May to October 2017, Beat the Street will be running in North Lanarkshire, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Nottingham, East London and Belfast, find out more about your nearest game here.

The National Charity Partnership, a collaboration between the British Heart Foundation (BHF), Diabetes UK and Tesco, supports people to get active and eat healthily to reduce their risk of heart and circulatory disease and Type 2 diabetes. Its Let's Do This campaign encourages people to take small steps towards healthier lifestyles. For more information visit http://www.lets-dothis.org.uk and check out our articles to help you get active