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Patients’ step up to the challenge

Service users and staff are digging out their walking boots to take part in a virtual walking challenge covering 50 miles for National Walking Month.

Physical activity instructors, occupational therapists and physiotherapy staff are encouraging service users admitted to mental health services within the Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust to engage in exercise and adopt a healthy lifestyle by taking part in the 50 mile treadmill challenge.

A treadmill will be set up at Hallam Street Hospital, West Bromwich, on Wednesday 8th May from 8.30 am for service users and staff to join the team throughout the day and take it in turns walking for 15 minutes or for one mile.

Sam Dewis, Occupational Therapy and Physical Activity Team Leader, said: "The treadmill challenge is one of a range of activities we are doing to promote the benefits of exercise to both staff and service users."

Lyndsey Perkins, Clinical Exercise Instructor, adds "We can all improve our physical and mental health through exercise and healthy lifestyle choices.  Walking is one of the best forms of exercise to take up.  Not only is it one of the easiest and cheapest forms of improving health and wellbeing but it can also be fun and relaxing."

The Physical Activity Team at Hallam Street, the MacArthur centre and Penn Hospital will also be arranging a variety of walks throughout the month in addition to the existing walking for health walks which take place every week for inpatients at Hallam Street and Penn Hospitals.

The mileage for the virtual walk is the total journey it would take to visit all the Trust's hospitals and bases including Hallam Street Hospital, Delta House, Edward Street Hospital, Heath Lane, all in West Bromwich, Penn Hospital, Wolverhampton, Orchard Hills in Walsall and Ridge Hill in Stourbridge.