The Nutrition and Physical Activity Program in the Department of Health launched a campaign to get all South Dakotans to walk more this summer.
In conjunction with the Surgeon General’s recent Call to Walk, the campaign emphasizes walking as the single most recommended form of exercise. It’s one of the easiest, least expensive and most customizable types of physical activity, according to Kiley Hump, chronic disease prevention and health promotion administrator for the Department of Health.
“Regular physical activity reduces the risk of numerous chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, certain cancers, depression and even falls. Walking for just 15 or 20 minutes per day is one of the most accessible ways to stay active, reduce health risks and improve quality of life,” said Hump. “Walk with friends, family, coworkers and pets in your neighborhood, community and at work.”
The campaign includes monthly Facebook photo contests from June to September. Post a photo and use the hashtag #WalkToWinSD to enter. Winners will receive physical activity trackers or walking shoes.
“Slightly more than half of South Dakota adults meet the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans for aerobic activity,” said Hump. “The goal of this campaign is to encourage South Dakotans to add a little more physical activity to their daily routines.”
Data from the department’s behavioral risk factor survey shows walking is the most reported physical activity for 39 percent of South Dakotans and the second most-reported activity for another 10 percent.