They talk the talk, but don’t walk

Reduce stress and climb the stairs, such as those at Pasadena City Hall.
(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

Humans don’t always behave in their own best interests, and that includes the way we walk. Or don’t.

A recent survey showed that most people — 94% of those surveyed nationwide — know that walking is good for their health. And nearly as many said it was a good way to lose weight and prevent heart disease. Eight-seven percent said walking is a good way to reduce anxiety, and about 80% said it helps depression.

But 79% said they should walk more than they do, and 35% said they are walking less than they did five years ago. A third of the people surveyed said they don’t walk for 10 minutes at one time over the course of a week.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends people walk at least 150 minutes a week.


The news is not all bad: Thirty percent said they walk more than they did five years ago.

Respondents cited several reasons they don’t walk: lack of time and energy, and not living in neighborhoods they consider walkable (such as those with sidewalks).

The survey was conducted in August among 1,224 adults nationwide by GfK Research for Kaiser Permanente, which has a walking program for employees and for the public.



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