Britons walked 1,588 MILES on average this year – enough to get you from Lands’ End to John O’Groats and almost back again, report reveals

  • Our average step count this year was 9,191– equivalent to 1,588 miles per year
  • This placed the UK fifth out of 27 countries for both daily total and pace per mile
  • Results are likely to be skewed as they are based on Garmin’s customers who are often fitness fanatics

Britons walked enough steps this year to get them from Lands’ End to John O’Groats – and almost back again.

Our average step count this year was 9,191– equivalent to 1,588 miles per year – at an impressive speed of just over 6.5mph.

This placed the UK fifth out of 27 countries for both daily total and pace per mile, according to sports tech firm Garmin.

The results are likely to be skewed however as they are based on the US firm’s customers who are often fitness fanatics.

Britons walked enough steps this year to get them from Lands’ End to John O’Groats – and almost back again (stock image)

The pace you walk at may be more important than your overall step count when it comes to warding off disease, research suggests.

For years studies have shown 10,000 daily steps is the sweet spot for lowering the risk of an early death – no matter the speed they’re done at.

But experts in Denmark and Australia have found picking up the pace could reduce the risk even further, even if you do fewer steps.

Read more 

The 2022 Connect Fitness report looked at data from people who use its range of smart watches, wearables, and apps across 27 countries in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

It found the UK’s average pace – which includes both walking and running – was nine minutes and 11 seconds per mile, or 6.53mph.

The average walking pace is between 2.5 and 4mph, while jogging speed is between 4 and 6mph.

The UK’s overall daily step count meanwhile was 9,191, or around four to five miles, which is just under the recommended 10,000 steps a day.

Walking this every day over a year would take us the 834 miles by road from Lands’ End to John O’Groats and around 86 miles short of the return leg.

Beating the UK in top spot for total number of steps was Spain with 9,763 daily steps.

They were followed by Ireland at 9,459, who also recorded the fastest pace at eight minutes and 52 seconds, or 6.77mph.

Many believe completing 10,000 steps a day – the basic recommendation baked into most of our fitness tracking devices – is rooted in science.

The UK’s overall daily step count was 9,191, or around four to five miles, which is just under the recommended 10,000 steps a day

But its origins are in fact from the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games. A native clock maker keen to capitalise on interest in the event mass-produced a pedometer with a name that translated as ‘10,000-steps metre’.

Over the decades it has somehow become embedded in our global consciousness, but research carried out since suggest we don’t actually need to do quite so much.

Women in their 70s who manage as few as 4,400 steps a day reduced their risk of premature death by around 40 per cent.

The 2019 study found the risk lessened even further when upped to 5,000 steps, but it plateaued at about 7,500 steps.

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HOW MUCH EXERCISE YOU NEED, ACCORDING TO THE NHS 

To stay healthy, adults aged 19 to 64 should try to be active daily and should do:

  • at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity such as cycling or brisk walking every week and
  • strength exercises on 2 or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms)

Or:

  • 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity such as running or a game of singles tennis every week and
  • strength exercises on 2 or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms)

Or:

  • a mix of moderate and vigorous aerobic activity every week – for example, 2 x 30-minute runs plus 30 minutes of brisk walking equates to 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity and
  • strength exercises on 2 or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms)

A good rule is that 1 minute of vigorous activity provides the same health benefits as 2 minutes of moderate activity.

One way to do your recommended 150 minutes of weekly physical activity is to do 30 minutes on 5 days every week.

All adults should also break up long periods of sitting with light activity.

Source: NHS 

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