15 leading health and social care charities representing many of the 15 million people living with long-term health conditions, along with the support from Sport England, have come together to create a unified voice and to develop a unique and important behaviour change campaign.
The campaign "We are Undefeatable" aims to change the misconception that those of us with long-term health conditions can’t be active.
It seeks to inspire and empower those of us who are least active to build physical activity into our lives in small chunks, in a way that long term health conditions allow, whilst celebrating every little victory.
Launched on 2 September 2019, the campaign shares the lived experiences of people who navigate the ups and downs of their conditions alongside being active.
People with health conditions are twice as likely to be inactive. Over a third do less than 30 minutes of activity per week. Being physically active can help people manage long term conditions such as:
Physical activity helps people reduce anxiety and fatigue, improve self-confidence, self-esteem and general mood and prevent additional conditions developing.
Choose to move. However you choose to move, it’s all good for your health and wellbeing. Try building activity into your day, like taking the stairs and walking more. Or try out different activities, like swimming, cycling, Pilates or using an app such as the free Active 10 app. A brisk 10 minute walk is a great way to improve your health. Download the free Active 10 app to track how much brisk walking you’re doing and how you can do more.
Do activities you enjoy. Doing something that you enjoy means you’re far more likely to keep doing it, so try a few activities until you find the right thing for you. Moving more with friends, family members and others can also help make it more fun!
Make the most of good days. Each day, listen to your body and do what feels comfortable for you. On your good days, do a little more where you feel you can. On ‘down’ days, you may need to do less. Small amounts of activity all add up.
Make a plan. Lots of people find it helpful to make a plan covering things like:
Start slowly and build up. When moving more, you may feel warmer or even slightly breathless. You might also find that your muscles and joints get a little sore a day or two afterwards. This is normal, but you can help avoid this by starting slowly and gradually increasing the length and intensity of your activity. For more structured activities, including a warm up and cool down can also help.
What do I need? You don’t need any special kit or equipment to get moving but we recommend you wear something comfortable. For some activities, wearing supportive footwear can help you feel more comfortable and safe.
Need some advice? Interested in getting active? Mention it to your healthcare professional or occupational health provider during your appointment. You should stop and seek medical advice if:
Those with chronic medical conditions may need to take medical advice about the type and how long exercise is good for them.