Walking in Canada

The restrictions on indoor activities and closures of gyms and fitness facilities during the pandemic encouraged more people to take up walking. Canadians, in particular, have taken to walking in their droves. 

A recent CBC item reports that the Northern Lights Walking Club and the St. Albert Trekkers have seen a sharp rise in memberships over the last few months.

The government issued Manitoba “in motion” booklet offering “information to assist community leaders or volunteers who are interested in organizing a walking club in their community” states: “Walking is the most popular form of physical activity for Canadians.”

Why is Walking in Canada So Popular

The growing importance that health institutions are placing on exercise is encouraging more people to identify physical activity they can enjoy. Walking is an easy and obvious choice because it’s highly accessible, has a low entry barrier and requires no special equipment or training. 

Most people have to walk during some part of their day anyway. So walking a little bit further and incorporating it into your day as an exercise routine is a convenient option for individuals to engage in physical activity.

Walking can also help you to stay in shape, get a breath of fresh air, improve digestion, and spend time with friends. And because Canada is blessed with green spaces and an abundance of natural beauty, there is no shortage of opportunities to work on your healthy goals. 

walking in canada

The popularity of walking in Canada may also be attributed to supportive urban planning, which emphasizes walkability and the provision of pedestrian-friendly infrastructure. Many cities and communities have invested in creating pedestrian paths, sidewalks, and parks that encourage walking as a means of transportation and exercise.

Nature walks, or city parks, afford people the opportunity to break free from the confines of their homes, enjoy fresh air, and experience a change of scenery. 

Walking in nature has been shown to have positive effects on mental health, reducing stress levels, improving mood, and promoting overall well-being. Taken as a moderate aerobic activity, walking can improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen muscles and bones, aid in weight management, and reduce the risk of chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. 


More than 90% of illnesses are thought to be stress-related. Regular walking can also contribute to mental well-being, stress reduction, and improved mood. 

Walking helps regulate the production of stress hormones whilst stimulating endorphins, natural mood-enhancing chemicals in the brain. Endorphins act as natural painkillers and provide a sense of well-being and relaxation. The increase in endorphin levels during walking can help alleviate stress and promote a more positive mood.

Reducing stress and emotional well-being is accentuated if you’re walking in groups or with family and friends. Walking gives you the opportunity for emotional bonding as you combine exercise with socializing and leisure.


Going for a walk can offer a temporary escape from stress-inducing environments or situations. It provides a change of scenery and a break from daily routines, allowing your mind to temporarily shift focus and recharge. Make the most of all the places to walk in your local environment, and improve your health, mood and relationships.