25/01/2022 Social prescribing can reach people who would benefit most from getting active

Social prescribing can reach people who would benefit most from getting active

Research from the ‘We are Undefeatable’ campaign reveals the barriers to moving more for people with long-term health conditions. One solution: social prescribing!

We’re coming to the end of a long, cold January and as is customary at this time of year, many of us will have considered creating new habits over the last month. It’s likely that increasing our amount of physical activity could be close to the top of the list. After all, physical activity improves physical and mental health, wellbeing, quality of life as well as helping to reduce social isolation.

But for some of us, this change may be easier to enact than for others.

For example, if you’re one of the 43% of adults living in England with a long-term health condition, it’s very likely you’ll find it harder to make this change. Data from Sport England suggest that people with long-term health conditions are twice as likely as those without a health condition to do less than thirty minutes of physical activity a week.

Why is this? Well, research from the We Are Undefeatable campaign and the Richmond Group of Charities that I work for, indicates that there’s an assortment of barriers related to our capability, opportunity and motivation to be active, which prevent many of us from being able to kick-start a new habit of moving more. Whilst there isn’t a magic-bullet solution for this issue, there are some useful insights and resources that can help us work together to overcome this challenge. Social prescribing offers a fantastic opportunity to reach the people with the most to gain from increasing their activity levels.

To hear us debunk some of the myths about physical activity and find out the five things you need to know about how you can help support people with long-term conditions to move more, listen back to our Thriving Communities webinar on physical activity.


Michelle Roberts works at The Richmond Group of Charities, where she oversees a programme that supports people living with long-term conditions to be active.

Three people in an exercise studio sit on mats holding resistance bands above their heads, facing an instructor
Helping people become more active


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