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Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Walking festival organisers go the extra mile with bumper programme

Two walks using one of the world’s fastest growing and most effective fitness techniques have been added to this year's Rosedale Walking Festival programme.

Nordic walking instructor Jill Allen checks out the routes
ahead of June’s festival. Photo by Tony Bartholomew.

Nordic walking sessions for beginners and more experienced walkers will feature on the weekend of 25 and 26 June.

Participants can choose from a selection of eight different walks over the weekend, including a meander round the local teashops, a Pilgrims’ Way walk, a short ramble for families with young children, and walks focusing on the rich wildlife and history of the dale.

In 2012, Rosedale Abbey, the dale’s main village, became the first village in the North York Moors National Park to gain Walkers are Welcome status – an innovative community-led scheme which aims to highlight areas which have demonstrated real commitment to making visits from walkers as enjoyable as possible.

CHALLENGING PROCESS
To gain the status, village representatives had to undertake a challenging application process to prove their commitment, including measures taken to maintain existing walks in good condition, and facilities available to visitors.

Ian Thompson, of Rosedale’s Walkers are Welcome committee, said: “Nordic walking enhances the effects of ordinary walking to make it a hugely effective fitness technique.

"It’s important, though, that participants learn how to do it correctly, so we’re delighted to welcome instructor Jill Allen to our programme of events this year.”

Jill Allen, who qualified as a Nordic walking instructor with Nordic Walking UK four years ago, says: “Nordic walking is a brilliant and safe form of exercise which provides a cardio workout as it works both upper and lower body.

"The poles are used in a specific way to propel the walker forward, increasing the stride length and pace, but also providing stability and offloading the joints of the lower body by transferring some of the effort to the upper body.”

Places on the Walking Festival events range from £1 for the family walk to £12 for the teashop walk (which includes refreshments and lunch at various tea rooms along the route); most cost £4. Children take part for free.

Walkers can turn up on the day, but organisers warn that numbers are limited. Further information: www.rosedaleabbey.com/walking-festival.html

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