Better Transport for Better Health – how a short walk or cycle can play a big part in being healthy

Woman riding a bike in a town

At Transport East, we endorse active travel for short journeys. Walking and cycling not only plays an important role in reducing carbon emissions but it also contributes to good health, which is why for Better Transport Week – and to celebrate Clean Air Day – we want to highlight some of the key facts and benefits of choosing an active journey. 

High vehicle use causes higher levels of air pollution, which may increase cardiovascular and respiratory conditions in communities across the East. Physical activity such as cycling and walking help to prevent and manage over 20 chronic conditions and diseases. The Government’s Gear Change reports says some of the risks active travel can reduce of are: 

  • Dementia up to 30% 
  • Hip fractures up to 63% 
  • Depression up to 30% 

Find out more in the report, here. 

According to, the average number of early deaths that could be prevented each year in England through cycling and walking journeys is just under 1,200. Through promoting active travel and providing better infrastructure for walking and cycling, Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex can provide people with safe and well-connected transport links which boost the region’s health through active journeys and cleaner air in our communities.  

And, according to Energy Saving Trust, walking and cycling to school or work doesn’t take as long as you might think! Most people can walk a mile in around 15 – 20 minutes or cycle this in five. With some (hopefully) sunny days expected over the next few weeks, why not choose walking and cycling for your next short journey.