Walk Across Arkansas exercise program warms up
As families resume their busy back-to-school schedules, it's important to take time to exercise, experts say.
Walk Across Arkansas, an eight-week, group-based exercise program from the Cooperative Extension Service, is designed to help Arkansans get moving and collaborate with peers.
The free program is offered each spring and fall by the Cooperative Extension Service, the outreach arm of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. Participants record the total number of minutes spent being physically active each day -- and any moderate to vigorous physical activity that boosts the heart rate counts -- not just walking, according to a news release.
Teams can consist of one person to as many as 30 people. Participants can register and log exercise minutes at walk.uada.edu/walk/. Registration for the fall 2023 session opens today, and the competition starts Sept. 11 and ends on Nov. 5.
Heather Wingo, extension health program associate for the Division of Agriculture, said the Walk Across Arkansas program is a great resource for Arkansans looking to improve their health.
"Walk Across Arkansas provides an endless list of benefits, such as improving physical activity goals, encouraging teamwork, improved strength and stamina, and lower stress levels," Wingo said. "And it's completely free, making it very accessible for all participants."
During the spring 2023 Walk Across Arkansas session, 409 participants on 82 teams from 43 counties logged 1,036,886 minutes. Wingo said many participants reported they had more energy, slept better, controlled stress, strengthened relationships, lost weight or inches, and improved their blood panels and blood pressure.
"Participants can start slow and gradually build up their exercise time over the course of eight weeks as they get stronger," Wingo said. "If you need a little motivation to get going, having friends with similar goals can help you stay on track."
Anyone can participate in Walk Across Arkansas. Division of Agriculture employees must use a personal email address, not their work email address, to register. Visit walk.uada.edu/walk/ to learn more and register or contact a local county extension agent.
To learn about extension programs in Arkansas, contact a local Cooperative Extension Service agent or visit www.uaex.uada.edu. Follow the agency on Twitter and Instagram at @AR_Extension.
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs to all eligible persons without discrimination.
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