Recent months have seen the the Staffordshire Athletics Network acquiring Health and Wellbeing funding to help get hundreds of people across the County more physically through jogging and running. Local towns and areas to benefit have been Cannock, Norton Canes, Rugeley, Newcastle under Lyme, Silverdale, Kidsgrove, Uttoxeter, Burton on Trent and Stoke on Trent. Here groups of beginners have taken part in sessions, of 6 – 10 weeks, led by qualified coaches provided by local clubs. The Network has also laid out marked 3:2:1 kilometres jogging routes in Stoke on Trent and Uttoxeter to help provide bespoke trails for beginners and experienced runners alike in those two urban areas.

The idea has been to take sessions into the community with sessions taking place at a variety of settings such as local community centres, local parks, leisure centres and also work places. Following the conclusion of the sessions many participants have continued to run as part of a healthy lifestyle with some joining established running clubs. Others have formed new clubs that have often been based on new circles of social friends created by beginner running activity. The outcome……..a positive impact on the physical, social and emotional wellbeing of more and more inhabitants of Staffordshire. And to capitalise on these successes the Network has accessed new National Lottery Awards For All and Sport England Small Grants funding to broaden out the project into Hednesford and more comprehensively across Stoke on Trent.

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