Health Tips

More than ‘a man’s best friend’

We know that pet ownership is great for your mental health, and we can all agree that now is the time to look after THAT. Dogs provide companionship, unconditional love and they never question your motives (or your taste in TV programs)…… plus they are one reason to be allowed out of your yard in the current COVID19 crisis.  But they are also great for our physical health.

Did you know that dogs (in particular), are also a great way to maintain your fitness?

There are 4 main types of physical activities needed to keep your body fit:

  1. moderate exercise
  2. strengthening motions
  3. balancing actions
  4. flexibility movements

Here’s the deal: IF the dog is young, strong and enthusiastic a whole workout can be achieved in 20-30 minutes.

  • chasing dog = moderate
  • dragging dog back = strengthening
  • standing on one leg while untangling the leash from the other = balancing
  • ducking under tree branches and doing the limbo under fences = flexibility

If you don’t have a dog – consider getting one, there is plenty of  evidence that they (or any pet really) can be great for your heart health, lowering your blood pressure, making friends, soothing stress, and making more meaning in life. They really are your best friend.

Now if you’re feeling adventurous and want to get out with you pampered pooch take a look at some of these great walking routes. You can start small and work your way up as your stamina (and your dog’s) increase. (be sure to check before entering a National Park area with your dog – even on a leash)
Penrith Walking Routes

Dog Friendly walks in the Blue Mountains

A guide to Parks and walking tracks in the Hawkesbury

MapMyWalk in Lithgow

Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District