January is the time of year when gyms across the country see an upsurge in memberships as people aim to shift the pounds they have piled on over Christmas and get healthy for the new year.
But, you don’t have to join a gym or health club to get fit when Yorkshire has so much to offer for a healthy January. The Yorkshire Society have taken a look as to why Yorkshire is the best place to hit your new years health goals…
Yorkshire is the largest region in the UK, a nation within a nation and has one of the most diverse landscapes in England. There are so many places that people can get out and about, to jog, walk the dog or go on a brisk walk and get the heart going.
There are two National Parks – the Yorkshire Dales and the North York Moors which between them cover an area of 3,615 square kilometres. They were not only set up to conserve and enhance the culture and natural beauty of the area, but for recreation too. There are plenty of footpaths and walks to be had from high peaks to low level strolls.
But Yorkshire’s open spaces don’t just include the National Parks, but we have two official Area’s of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in Nidderdale and the Howardian Hills with the lesser known chalk uplands of the Yorkshire Wolds favourite to receive AONB status anytime.
We have a coastline of over 120 miles stretching from the Tees Estuary down to the Humber, including many coastal paths, wonderful beaches and stunning cliffs. Yorkshire has some great beaches too, think Whitby, Sandsend, Scarborough, Filey, Bridlington, Staithes and Runswick Bay. So as well as walking, people in Yorkshire can get out and go for a swim easily and get involved in all sorts of watersports including surfing, sailing or paddleboarding. All great pastimes to improve not just physical health but mental health too.
Most local councils in Yorkshire, more than many other regions, have completely engaged in The Parks & Green Spaces Strategy, understanding how important parks and green spaces are for communities for their well-being. It is now recognised as being one of Yorkshire’s key strengths in attracting business and visitors to the area. During Covid these local and regional green spaces have been well used for exercise and general wellbeing, so are perfect places to start a health kick close to home. We are luckier than many regions to have so much green space.
We have a multitude of sports clubs, sports centres, coaches and academies where people can get actively involved, receive professional guidance and improve their perfomance. Just remember Yorkshire back in 2012 when Yorkshire would have finished 12th overall at the Olympic games if we had been an independent state!
Whilst other regions such as London may have a higher concentration of gyms, Yorkshire has a wealth of outdoor space and locations which is free to use and without any expensive membership fees. So why not lace up the trainers, put on the walking boots or just head out for a stroll and get some steps in and explore Yorkshire.