Lanarkshire Green Health Partnership is encouraging people living in Cumbernauld to get outdoors and make use of the green space that’s on our doorstep – and see the wonders it has on improving their health and wellbeing.
There are many ways to feel the benefit of local green space, including walking, gardening, cycling, volunteering, outdoor learning and play, as well as just enjoying being out in green spaces and nature. And you don’t have to be an athlete or fitness fanatic to gain.
Steady-paced walking for 30 minutes each day for five days reduces the risk of several illnesses, including depression. Indeed, it is known that 9 out of 10 people who visit the outdoors report improvement in their mental health. Being outdoors and active is also an excellent way of guarding against future health issues and conditions.
Greater Cumbernauld has many places in which people can enjoy the advantages of nature, including Palacerigg Country Park, Cumbernauld House Park, Cumbernauld Community Park, Colzium House and Estate and several golf courses, to name just a few. Another fun and simple way to be outdoors and help your mental health is through taking part in health walks organised by Get Walking Lanarkshire.
Health walks are free, short and gentle walks, lasting no longer than an hour. Everyone is welcome and the walks are particularly suitable for people who are not very active, people with a health condition or those recovering from illness or an injury. Weekly walks take place across North Lanarkshire, including local ones in Cumbernauld town centre, Abronhill, Kilsyth and Moodiesburn. Click here for further information on the schedule of walks currently available.
For those who would like to get their hands a bit dirtier, there are lots of outdoor volunteering opportunities available in Cumbernauld too. Organisations and initiatives such as Cumbernauld Living Landscape, The Conservation Volunteers (TCV), Scottish Wildlife Trust, Watch Us Grow, Active Schools North Lanarkshire and Seven Lochs Wetland Park operate in the local area and regularly recruit volunteers for outdoor activities and events.
It is true that we’re often happier when we’re outdoors. Think back to your childhood, when you climbed trees, built dens in the woods, went fishing in the local river and ran wild in open spaces! It doesn’t need to end now are adults. Maybe we can’t climb trees anymore or run as fast as we once could, but we know that spending time in nature is good for the body and soul and there is evidence to support this.
If you would like to find out more about getting outdoors in the Cumbernauld area, please visit Lanarkshire Green Space online. Further information, advice and signposting can also be obtained by contacting Cumbernauld Community Health Information Hub.