Sport Auckland has been collaborating with the Department of Conservation to support people to enjoy nature walks.
In October 2017, over 150 Green Prescription clients, friends and families climbed Rangitoto together. The partnership along with Fullers ferries was a success, this led to a walk with 90 clients in June 2018 and future walks are planned for conservation week in September.
Nature and exercise can improve health and wellbeing in many ways. As little as 30 minutes in nature each week can help reduce depression and high blood pressure. After spending time in nature, people are more productive and can focus better. This can also improve sleep quality which is critical for healing, calming and growing. Contact with nature is essential for children’s physical, cognitive and social development. Regular exercise in preparation for a climb, provides health benefits and can prevent a range of health problems as well. A challenging hill climb builds strength and sense of achievement.
Helen (pictured) conquered Rangitoto with high BP, cholesterol, pre diabetes, osteoarthritis and asthma. She said “I have never been to Rangitoto before but it has been on my bucket list for a few decades. It was an overwhelming experience to participate especially as there were lots of other people in similar situations to my own who understood, were supportive and encouraging. It was mind blowing to get to the top, feeling a tad sore but proud of myself…”
Other clients said “Thank you for the opportunity to walk up Rangitoto. I was the guy who had two knee replacements… I saw this as opportunity to see how far my knees had progressed”
“It was really quite inspirational seeing many of the group making their way to the top of Rangitoto. It was hard work though and how some of the group made it I do not know, they were incredible. The assistance they received from you folk made all the difference that was obvious…”
Highlights of the trip can be seen on this short video: 2018 Rangitoto Summit Walk for 100 + Green Prescription clients - Vimeo website
The Department of Conservation have a range of short walks nationwide to inspire you: Short walks - DOC website