New plan for Barnsley to be active

A new plan to help people to be more physically active in Barnsley is set to be approved by the council’s Cabinet at their next meeting on Wednesday 23 January.

Physical activity is one of the priorities in the newly developed Public Health strategy 2018-2021.

The Physical Activity Plan, which has been jointly led between Yorkshire Sport Foundation and Barnsley Council in partnership with a range of organisations, aims to tackle the high levels of physical inactivity across the borough.

In Barnsley, some 55 per cent of people surveyed were classed as active according to physical activity guidelines levels (150 minutes per week).  Almost 30 per cent of the people surveyed did less than 30 minutes of activity per week.  This is one of the highest rates of inactivity compared to other areas across Yorkshire and the Humber. 

Physical activity includes any movement which raises the heart rate and has a positive impact on mental and physical wellbeing.  It can include daily tasks such as housework and gardening, transport such as cycling, walking and scooting, as well as more organised activities such as using the gym, parkrun or playing team sports.

Being more active has many benefits for adults and children, including maintaining a healthy weight and better mental wellbeing. This can have wider impacts such as improving attainment in school and connecting with people.  More active people have a lower risk of developing diseases such as diabetes, cancer and health disease. 

The plan proposes how everyone can contribute locally to get more active and improve the borough’s health. It aims to deliver the partnership vision of a “healthy and proud Barnsley where active living is part of everyday life for everyone” and identifies five priorities;

  • Active Schools and Colleges - working with Barnsley schools and colleges to create hubs of physical activity
  • Active Workplaces - increasing physical activity opportunities in places of work
  • Active Spaces - making it easier for people to build activity into daily lives
  • Active Communities - using physical activity to help communities achieve their potential
  • Professional and Volunteer Networks - developing physical activity skills and knowledge across a variety of networks.

There will be a bigger push over the next three years to work together with partners to deliver the benefits of an active life including Barnsley Council, Barnsley Premier Leisure, Yorkshire Sport Foundation, Barnsley College, Schools Alliance, Barnsley NHS Foundation Trust and community and voluntary sector organisations.

The report can be read in full here

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