World Walking is proud to call Scotland it's home and we enjoy using our platform to help showcase the best our country has to offer at the same time as doing what we can to help get Scotland (and the world) walking.

It just so happens that 2017 is Scotland's Year of History, Heritage and ArchaeologyWe're delighted to have been given the opportunity of collaborating with Historic Environment Scotland to help promote this unique year-long celebration of our country's rich culture.

Thanks to Historic Environment Scotland's help, you can now enjoy exploring some of the historic highlights of Dumfries & Galloway. As we'll shortly be piloting the use of World Walking in a small number of primary schools in partnership with NHS Dumfries & Galloway we thought this beautiful region of Scotland would be a good place to start. We're hoping to add more virtual historic walks around our wonderful country as 2017 unfolds.

Our new Dumfries & Galloway route takes you a 115 mile walk that takes in 9 historic sites across the region: Caerlaverock Castle, Sweetheart Abbey, New Abbey Corn Mill, Threave Castle, Dundrennan Castle, McLellan's Castle, Cardoness Castle, Glenluce Abbey and Whithorn Priory and Museum.

The team at Historic Environment Scotland has been terrific, especially Marketing Executive, Aimee Bertram, who has provided descriptions for each milestone along the walk as well as arranging for us to be granted permission to use Historic Environment Scotland images to make the walk come alive. Thanks Aimee - you're a star!

Enjoy exploring more of Scotland with World Walking thanks to Historic Environment Scotland.

World Walking is proud to be supporting Inverclyde's unique Million Miles Challenge which is open to everyone, no matter how young, old or fit you are which, to date, has clocked up over 450,000 miles.  To find out more about the Challenge just click on: https://vimeo.com/177253203

 

If you would like to use World Walking to support your own community-wide challenge, please get in touch with us. We'd love to hear from you.

The Inverclyde Million Miles Challenge is open to everyone in Inverclyde, including all schools. 

We are delighted that the organisers of the Challenge choose to use World Walking to collect and collate the miles being clocked up by those taking part.

World Walking allows you to use the distances you walk in the real world to complete imaginary (virtual) walks ranging from city tours to worldwide journeys. We have over 100 virtual walks to choose from, including an epic 8,000 mile walk from Scotland to Malawi which we hope might appeal to the many schools in Scotland which have links with Malawi through the Scotland Malawi Partnership.

World Walking's many features include:

  • Everyone’s welcome: Go it alone or create your own group - easily!  
  • Easy to use: Create your own unique login.
  • Track your progress:  Anytime you wish.  See what milestones you’ve reached, how many steps you’ve taken.  World Walking app users can even find out how high they’ve climbed!
  • See the world:  There are hundreds of the world’s most amazing places to visit with World Walking.  See where you are using the built-in Google Street View.
  • Gain awards:  There are 20 Awards to unlock!  The more you walk, the more you receive.

If you would like your school to take part in the Inverclyde Million Miles Challenge, please use the special Inverclyde Million Miles Challenge landing page which we've created to register (if you are new to World Walking) or login (if you have already created an account on World Walking). You will find the landing page at: worldwalking.org/millionmiles  

The landing page contains a short video about the Million Miles Challenge.

Once you have registered or logged in using the landing page all of the distances you subsequently add to World Walking will be included automatically in the live total displayed on the landing page of the miles walked by all the individuals and groups taking part in the Challenge.

Although you do not need to do so, it's a good idea to use the Quick Links on the landing page to:

  • Create a group for your school
  • Search for other groups taking part in the Million Miles Challenge
  • Start a new walk for your group
  • Add (bank) the distances which your pupils and staff walk
  • Use (spend) the distances you bank to complete the walk which your school has chosen to do from the range available on World Walking.

Apart from anything else, it will let you see at a glance how many miles have been walked by everyone taking part in the Challenge.

Once you have registered to take part in the Inverclyde Million Miles Challenge there are a few simple steps you need to follow. Here they are along with some helpful tips.

Step 1: Create a group for your school using the Quick Link on the landing page titled - "Create a Group"

You can set up your group so that teachers in your school can join it or set it up so that they need to be invited to join. 

Helpful tips:

  • The easiest way is probably to set up so that anyone can join it. You can always edit your group details later, once everyone who needs to join it from your school has joined the group, and change the group's status so that people have to be invited to join your group. 
  • When you are creating your group you might want to enter a 'group keyword' to make it easy to search for your group on World Walking

Step 2: Start a walk for your group using the Quick Link on the landing page titled - "Start a new walk"

Step 3: Ask your colleagues to:

  1. Register to use World Walking using the landing page to register (or login if they already have a World Walking account).
  2. Join your school's group
  3. Start your group's walk

Helpful tips:

  • World Walking allows users to enter an optional display name will be shown in place of their full name on the website. Teachers may wish to enter a display name which describes their class e.g. Miss Turner's Trailblazers or Primary 3.
  • Search for the group that has been set up for your school using the Quick Link on the landing page for 'Search 'millionmiles' groups' and entering the 'group keyword' in the 'search' box. To join the group, just click the 'Join this group' button.
  • To start your school's chosen walk your colleagues should just click on 'My Groups', then click on 'Our Walks'. They will see a message which says that they not part of this walk yet and an invitation to join now which they just need to click.

Adding the distances you walk

To log the distance you have walked to help complete your chosen virtual walk you need to deposit your distance in your World Walking 'bank' and then 'spend' the distance you have 'banked' on your walk. 

We have included a Quick Link on the landing page for you to use to 'Add your distance (bank)'.  

You can 'spend' the distance you have 'banked' anytime. You will find another Quick Link on the landing page labelled 'Spend distance on a walk' which allows you to do that.

Editing your group details

To edit your group details e.g. to change the status of your group to 'invite only', open your 'group' page and then click on the down arrow at the right hand side of the menu bar on your group page.

Select the 'edit group' option from the short drop down menu that appears.

Setting your default unit of distance

With World Walking users can enter their distances in steps, kilometers or miles.

To help users enter their distance correctly they can set a default unit of distance. To do this click on  'settings' on the menu or your dashboard (user's home page) and select the value you prefer to use when entering the distance you walk e.g. miles if your school is doing the Daily Mile.

The Inverclyde Globetrotters, a few of whom are 80 years young, met again today at Inverclyde Leisure's Waterfront Gym as part  of the Live Exercise Exercise Referral Scheme.

This week they clocked up 642 miles. An excellent week.

It's almost 9 years to the day since the group set off to walk round the world with nothing but a £3.99 map of the world and a box of pedometers kindly donated by the cardiac rehabilitation team at Inverclyde Royal Hospital.

Today the group walked (smashed!) through the 400 MILLION steps mark and with that clocked up more than 170,000 miles on their virtual travels around the world which have taken them to over 100 countries around the globe and all without ever leaving Greenock.

They are currently walking across the Atlantic Ocean, not for the first time, because you can do that in our wonderful world of virtual walking. Their goal is Rio which they intend to reach before the end of the Inverclyde Million Miles Challenge in June 2017. 



Back in May 2016, World Walking introduced Fitbit and Jawbone integration on our new-look website and apps. A frequently requested feature, this integration allowed thousands of our users to connect their World Walking account to their favourite tracker, automatically banking their daily steps.

Today we're delighted to release an updated version of the underlying Fitbit and Jawbone integration. Connecting is still as simple as 1 click (Settings > Apps), and existing users don't have to do a thing.

The new version cleverly keeps up to date with your Fitbit tracker - just keep your device synced using the official Fitbit app and World Walking will pull in your steps when they come through in the background. 

For more information or help, please see Help > Syncing

At World Walking we’re always on the lookout for ideas for new walks.  

For a while now we’ve had the idea of a creating a walk from Scotland to Malawi at the back of our minds but never quite got round to it.

But thanks to an approach from Ailie Grant, class teacher at Kilmacolm Primary School, and help from Emily Mnyayi, Youth and Schools Officer, at the Scotland Malawi Partnership in Edinburgh, we’re delighted to say we’ve got round to it in time to help get 2017 off on the right foot.

Scotland's connections with Malawi began with Scottish missionary and explorer, David Livingstone, over 150 years ago.

Today, through the Scotland Malawi Partnership, over 200 Scottish schools have active links with schools in Malawi or learn about Malawi as part of their curriculum.  Kilmacolm Primary School is one of them and in Autumn 2016 Ailie and her young world walkers at the school decided to take on the Daily Mile Challenge to help them reach the their sister school in Phinda in Malawi.

The School will also be feeding their miles into the Inverclyde Million Miles Challenge which uses World Walking to log all distances.

Ailie’s approach was exactly the push we needed to get cracking. We were delighted when Emily liked the idea and kindly shared some Scottish Malawi Partnership images for us to use to help us create the walk.

We’re hoping that this new route will appeal to the Scottish schools with links with schools in Malawi (and others) and motivate them to take up the challenge of walking all the way from Scotland to Malawi.  In doing so, we hope the initiative will:

  • build on the long-standing links between the two countries;
  • help ingrain the attitudes, skills and behaviours for lifelong physical activity and health; and
  • develop the pupils’ knowledge and understanding of the world and their place in it

Good luck Kilmacolm Primary School and thanks Ailie and Emily for helping make this happen.

If you have an idea for a new route which you'd like to consider please don't hesitate to get in touch. We’d love to hear from you.

After months of planning, design and development, we are delighted to launch the brand new World Walking website and mobile apps today.



World Walking has grown from strength to strength since launching in 2013, with our bespoke website and apps updated to accommodate various new features and improvements including group chat, social sharing and street view. Earlier this year our registered users passed 10,000, and we look forward to welcoming more users from across the world to use our free virtual walking platform.

Our brand new website has been redesigned with simplicity and accessibility in mind, and our modernisation including our responsive, mobile optimised layout will make our platform available to even more users across different devices.

Some of the big new features we've introduced in this new version include:

  • "Banking" steps - you can build up a personal bank of steps, kilometers or miles and spend the distance as you wish on any of your solo or group walks.
  • Fitbit and Jawbone integration - visit Settings > Apps to connect to your Fitbit or Jawbone account and your daily step total will be automatically pulled in to your World Walking bank.
  • Clearer walk and milestone progress layout on your solo and group walks.
  • Notifications - your personal feed of events from your groups or group walks, available on every page
  • Improved group chat - instant messaging between group members with notifications of new messages on every page
  • New help pages to guide you with any questions or issues while using our system
  • Many underlying improvements and fixes to keep our website running smoothly and giving you the best experience.

We'd love to know what you think of our new website. You can tweet us, or pop us an e-mail, and please do share our video by the talented Box Dog Inc with your friends and family, or invite them to join your group via our website.

A big thank you to the generous donations by NHS Health Scotland, Paths for All and our users - we wouldn't have been able to make these updates without your support.

Finally, this update was a joint effort between Glasgow based digital studio Papertank Limited and mobile developers Turing and Fergus Howe. A massive thank you to the combined efforts of everyone, and the ongoing support for World Walking for the past 4 years.

Next on our roadmap is a World Walking fundraising tool, integrated directly into your group walks to help you raise awareness and money for your local charity. Stay tuned!

Duncan

We are delighted to announce a new version of our free World Walking website and mobile apps will launch this coming weekend - 20th May 2016.

Thanks to generous donations by NHS Health Scotland, Paths for All and our users, and after several months of planning, design and development, our new version introduces a completely fresh design and exciting new features.

We're excited to launch our new design and hear your feedback. As part of our update, our website and apps will be offline from 8AM - 10AM BST on Friday 20th May - see you on the other side!


Happy Walking. Happy Days

Milestones feature prominently in World Walking. Route milestones. Personal milestones. Group milestones.

Today, World Walking reached a milestone of its own - 10,000 users. We're so chuffed!.

We'd like to thank:

Happy Walking. Happy Days.









World Walking

2015 was a great year for World Walking.

At the start of the year about 2,600 people had signed up to use World Walking. By the end of 2015, over 7500 people had registered; an increase of 184%!

During 2015, the total number of steps added to World Walking increased by 175% to over 2.95 billion!  That’s equivalent to walking round the world 50 times.

Some of the year’s other highlights for World Walking included:

  • Supporting the Race Across USA to highlight the work of The 100 Mile Club to raise awareness of and combat the problems caused by childhood obesity in the USA;
  • Being used successfully to support a worldwide “heart & sole” challenge to promote cardiac rehabilitation organised in partnership with the British Association for Cardiac Prevention & Rehabilitation and Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland;
  • Being used by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow as part of their campaign to promote the health and well-being benefits of being physically active; and
  • Supporting the Mayor’s health and fitness fair in the town of Titusville, Florida.

Thank You

We could not have done any of this without a lot of help and support from others so a HUGE thank you to:

  • Inverclyde Council for its grant to cover the operating costs of World Walking;
  • Paths for All for its grant to help us enhance World Walking to keep it moving forward; and
  • Maurice Donohue, Get Active Programme Manager, at the Scottish Association for Mental Health, and Dr Andrew Murray, Sports and Exercise Medicine doctor, GP and runner, for plugging World Walking.

Finally, thanks to Chris Baldie and David Rushton of Papertank Ltd., Michael Park of Turing Ltd. and Fergus Howe; the great team behind the scenes for all the time, effort and thought which they devoted to World Walking during 2015.  Without them none of this would be possible.

As our New Year dawns we have a lot of exciting things to look forward to but we’ll keep all that good news for another day!

Another year under the belts of the Inverclyde Globetrotters and it's been another great year for the heart health group in Scotland that inspired World Walking.

Walk Across Canada

As if it had been planned all along, the distances that were clocked up by the group over the Festive period brought them to the end of their walk across Canada just in time for the New Year to arrive. 

The walk took them from Vancouver in British Columbia on the west coast all the way to St John’s, the capital of Newfoundland and Labrador on the east coast; a total of 5,512 miles (12.4 million steps)!

Tally for the Year

The miles from their walk across Canada brought the Inverclyde Globetrotters' total miles for 2015 to an amazing 23,636 miles!

Where to Now?

The group had enough steps left over from their Canadian walk to make a start on their next mammoth trek; Africa - From Cairo to Cape Town.

By the time the Inverclyde Globetrotters walk the 6,000 miles south through the continent of Africa they will have clocked up over 150,000 miles; the equivalent of having walked 6 times round the World since they set off on their first virtual walk way back in 2008 with nothing but a map of the world and some pedometers!  Not bad for a group with an average age of about 70 years young.

Happy Birthday!

It's hard for us to believe it but the Inverclyde Globetrotters will be 8 years old in February 2008. They'll be having their birthday bash at the Great Pyramid complex at Giza in Egypt, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Wonders of the World. What could be better?

We’re committed to continuously improving World Walking with our very limited resources while responding promptly to any questions from our users.   So at the start of the year we decided to sign up to UserVoice to help us collect feedback and prioritise features.  We also use its help desk software to support our customers.

One of UserVoice’s handy features is its ‘Satisfaction Rating Widget’.  We decided to take the plunge and have a go.

The question asked of our users during August was “On a scale of 0 to 10 how likely would you be to recommend World Walking to a friend or colleague?”

We’ve just been looking at the results.  We received 183 responses and would like to thank everyone who took part.

We’re very pleased to be able to report that those who responded gave World Walking a positive overall rating of 7.3 out of 10 with 70% of respondents giving us the maximum score of 10 out of 10. 

Quite a few people who responded also added comments which we greatly appreciated.  Here are some of them:

“An excellent way to keep fit and enjoy it”

“I think this is a very useful tool and it encourages you to get out and walk and keep fit”

“I really enjoy adding my steps in at the end of the day and discovering which landmark I've reached. It's really encouraged me to walk more”

“What a great site! It's very motivational to see how far I've walked already, and it's interesting to learn about the places that I'm virtually in now. The fact that this is free is amazing too. Thank you so much!”

“Encourages you to go out and walk”

“It is a great motivational website”

“Easy to use”

“We are all spread across the country and a fun way to compete”

“Because it is a real incentive when you have a medical problem and walking can be difficult”

“I enjoy the walks, the "street view" and the fun of "visiting" new places”

“I think this is a brilliant way to make what can be quite a dull activity (especially if your walk to work involves a long, straight bit of road) a bit more interesting. Both abstract and concrete at the same time”

“I love the feeling of going somewhere on my walks and having maps and photos to look at”

“Interesting concept to promote and reward progress”

“Excellent incentive to walk”

“Favourite site. Absolutely brilliant!”

“Absolutely love this site, I have told everyone I can about it, and will continue to do so! Wish everyone used it. Good work!”

“I think it’s a great idea, I'm very competitive so if I get friends involved it will make me walk more”

“Amazing site that lets you see the world around you; you can even have friends help you conquer the steps from one Milestone to the next. All in great colour and great background descriptions at the Milestone”

“It's good fun, a challenge and a good way to spur me on”

“Simple idea but really does make you walk more in order to travel further on one of the journeys. I am enjoying watching my progress when my position on the map and Google Earth changes each day. It has become part of my daily routine to add my steps from the previous day.”

“World walking is great for encouraging my wife and I to go for a walk rather than sit in and watch the TV. And it’s great to have the chance to go somewhere virtually. We’re currently on our way round the world!”

“I think it's a very fun and motivating way to get some exercise. I also love all the information given about the milestones along the way”

“World Walking is amazing. I have always walked - for a time and then stopped because it seemed as though I was doing nothing more than walking aimlessly around our local streets. Since January 1st I feel fully motivated as I walk with purpose. I am slowly walking my way round the world. Your site is a brilliant motivator to keep people going. I love inputting my latest steps and seeing how far along my chosen route I've got today”

“I really like your variety of walks and that you have longer walks! When you average 20k daily, you need longer walks”

Thanks to all.

Happy Walking


We’re delighted to see World Walking being used by a charity to help raise funds for the first time.

The Diabetes Hope Foundation, based in Mississauga in Canada, was created in 1999 to help families struggling with the financial and emotional challenges of children living with diabetes.  Since then, Diabetes Hope has worked in partnership with corporations, families and community partners to support over 1,000 families with diabetes across Canada. 

This year Diabetes Hope has decided to revamp their 9th annual Diabetes Walk for Hope in September as a completely new virtual event featuring a Canadian Cities walk which we’ve created especially for their event.  All proceeds raised from the event will be used to support Diabetes Hope Foundation’s programmes for young people living with Diabetes across Canada.

We hope the Foundation’s 2015 Walk for Hope is a great success.

If you would like to find out more just check out http://www.diabeteswalkforhope.com/


Last year, we were delighted to be invited by NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde to support its annual walking challenge with the City of Glasgow.  This was their first online challenge and we were chuffed to bits when our system helped double the number of participants and distance walked.

The 2015 walking challenge has just ended.  Over 800 team took part this year, including some from East Renfrewshire, Inverclyde and Renfrewshire Councils.  The challenge for the teams this year was to walk the length of Great Britain; all the way from John O'Groats to Land's End. 

The total distance walked during this year's 6-week challenge was an amazing 468,060 miles; 7.8% up on last year's terrific total.

This is the third online walking challenge which the organisations have completed using our system.  So far, the overall distance walked is 915,946 miles; equivalent to walking 36 times round the world!  That's what you call 'active' staff'.

Here's to 2016!



It’s not every day that someone writes to you to say “I’ve been inspired to encourage my cardiac rehabilitation group to walk to meet the Inverclyde Globetrotters.” Especially someone on the other side of the world!

But that’s exactly Robyn Leece, Registered Nurse and Cardiac Rehabilitation Co-ordinator / Diabetes Nurse at Quirindi Health One in Quirindi in New South Wales, Australia did back on 22 April.

Robyn had read about the Inverclyde Globetrotters in an Australian Cardiovascular Health and Rehabilitation Association newsletter and thought this would be a great motivational tool for her ‘Heartmoves’ group of 20 to 30 cardiac rehabilitation clients and other community members.

They’ve decided to start their massive 13,500 mile walk from Quirindi to Scotland on 11 June 2015 coincide with the National Heart Foundation of Australia’s “Go Red For Women” campaign.

Pedometers have been organised and as enthusiasm has been building the ‘Heartmoves’ group named their group on World Walking the “Who’d a thought it Walkers” after the highest landmark in town, a hill that has a 360 degree lookout.  They've adopted the motto “not by sudden flight but step by step” which is the motto for the local high school.  

Needless to say the Inverclyde Globetrotters were well chuffed and it’s been decided that the Inverclyde Globetrotters and the Quirindi ‘Heartmoves’ group will ‘twin’’. Well if cities and town can ‘twin’ why not cardiac rehabilitation groups?

A special walk has been created on World Walking for the ‘Heartmovers’ to follow.

We created World Walking with a community spirit in mind.  We are delighted to welcome the ‘Heartmove’ group from Quirindi to our growing community of World Walkers and we look forward to watching their progress.  The warmest of Scottish welcomes awaits them in Greenock!


As a GP, our job is to offer the best to every patient, every time. 
 
There is one treatment that can extend life expectancy by 7 years, can help prevent and treat over 40 chronic diseases, can make you more productive at work, and evidence shows makes you happier on average. Although it sounds too good to be true, we have found that such a miracle treatment exists, and I frequently tell my patients, as well as my friends and family all about it. In fact I believe so strongly in it, that I will take it myself. Best of all there are virtually no side effects, and it is free. 

What is this wonder drug I hear you say? Many will have realised by now, that it is walking, or indeed any regular form of exercise. Building 30 minutes 5 times a week or similar into your life gets all these benefits, and you'll also help the environment and perhaps have a good catch up with friends or family if you persuade them to join you. 

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, along with a range of other organisations are starting to promote walking, and physical activity as a key component of achieving good health, and are delighted to be doing a virtual walk with World Walking- so far we have walked from Glasgow to India- and we'd love you to join us for the rest of the journey. Just click on https://worldwalking.org/rcpsg. Or else join in any of the other fabulous walks on World Walking. 

Andrew Murray, GP, Clinical fellow, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow www.docandrewmurray.com @docandrewmurray twitter

Welcome to our new blog which we've been able to create thanks to much appreciated funding from Paths for All, the Scottish charity which champions everyday walking as the way to a happier, healthier Scotland.



Who are the Inverclyde Globetrotters? 

The idea for the Inverclyde Globetrotters came from our weekly gym based cardiac rehabilitation class in Greenock, Scotland.  Our class is just one of many classes delivered by Inverclyde Leisure through the Live Active Exercise Referral Scheme that operates in our area.  We now cater for a variety of conditions - although we still have more than our fair share of by-passes, stents and pacemakers. 

Everyone knows that as soon as you start walking on a treadmill time immediately slows down and you think, mistakenly, that by staring at the clock on the machine you can will it to go faster. 

So in February 2008 we decided to ask our members a question – “Would you be up for the challenge of walking round the world?” –  Not the kind of question you get asked every day.  

Luckily, once they stopped laughing at the very idea of it, the members agreed to have a go. 

The aim of our walk was simply to encourage members to stay active between classes and accrue the health benefits that come from more walking and less sitting.  We also hoped that achieving such a long term goal – a journey that would take years to complete - would provide a real sense of accomplishment.

We gratefully accepted a box of pedometers from the cardiac rehabilitation team at Inverclyde Royal Hospital, bought a map, worked out a route and set off on our virtual journey round the world. 

We timed the start of our walk to coincide with the launch of the 2008 Scottish campaign to promote cardiac rehabilitation.  It was our way of saying thanks.

We contacted GB Olympic rowing legends, Sir Steve Redgrave and Sir Matthew Pinsent, more in hope than expectation, to ask if they would be kind enough to send a few words of encouragement and they did!  

Each week pedometers were handed over and steps recorded and distances walked, cycled and rowed during the class captured.  We tallied up our figures and plotted our progress on our map. 

In May 2010, after 117 weeks on the road, having made it to Beijing in time for the 2008 Olympics, we arrived back in Greenock having clocked up 30,688 miles. 

Seven years on we’re still walking and have now clocked up over 130,000 miles [that’s over 5 times round the world!] to more than 100 countries worldwide without ever leaving Greenock.


We have to thank World Walker, Geraldine Innes, for suggesting we add Ireland’s dramatic, scenic and culturally rich Wild Atlantic Way to our range of walks.  What a great suggestion!  Check it out. We're sure you’ll love it as much as we did.

Photo by pchgorman (Flickr)

Looking for a new challenge?  Then you might like to check out our latest World Walking route.

For the last few weeks we’ve been happily working to replicate the route of Race Across USA, a 3,000 mile, 140 day long footrace starting in January 2015 in support of The 100 Mile Club, an American not for profit organisation, whose goal is to confront the obesity problem caused by inactivity one child and one school at a time. 

We are delighted to have been invited to lend our support to this great cause.

Enjoy!