To assess the effectiveness of a walking program in a psychiatric in-patient unit.
In-patients at a private psychiatric unit were offered the opportunity to participate in a daily morning 40-minute walk led by an activity supervisor.
Cardiac function generally deteriorates with increasing age, although recent research has found a reversal in this decline in a group of middle-aged individuals after 18 weeks of brisk walking in single daily bouts of between 20-40 minutes.
The health risks associated with habitually low levels of physical activity are both serious and well documented. National and international public health authorities agree that, in many countries, the general population are insufficiently active and that this represents a major public health concern.