COPD walking group

Hear from COPD sufferers how the walking has helped them.

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Following the recent government information regarding coronavirus and the susceptibility of people with underlying health conditions we have decided to take the precautionary measure to postpone our social prescribing activities. We will be monitoring the situation and taking advice about the best way to proceed and we will resume our activities as soon as we can. Thank you for participating in the group. We will inform you through our usual channels when we resume.

Since 2005 a group of people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, have been meeting at Eden each week to walk between half and one and a half miles around the site. More than 150 individuals have benefitted from being part of the Eden COPD Walking Group since it started. 

'When I went to my last hospital appointment, my lungs had improved by 20%. The consultant put it down to the fact that I come every week and do the walk.'
Beryl, participating walker 

The individuals suffer from a range of lung diseases which cause shortness of breath and limit their ability to exercise, including chronic bronchitis, emphysema and chronic obstructive airways disease. Some of them were unable to take more than a few steps without oxygen when they began, but have made great improvements, and are spending less time in hospital.

The walks are led by volunteer walk leaders who provide support and help members to achieve their goals. Walking together as a group ensures there is always plenty of encouragement, reassurance and conversation. 

Why the Eden Project?

Eden was chosen as a venue for the group because it offers a challenging yet protected environment. The Eden Project was designed with accessibility in mind, so there is a great range of walking routes to suit all abilities. The paths are of varying gradients, yet they are accessible by wheelchair and scooter, and the group can call on an onsite paramedic and minibus if they need to. There are lots of points of interest along the way to keep the exercise fun, too, such as wildlife, different flowers in bloom, storytelling and exhibits on site, and Eden staff to chat to…

'We think it’s the best thing we do to aid our breathing problems... it not only helps with our health, but it’s good for our general wellbeing and new friendships are made.'

Participating walker

Get involved in the walks

When: Every Tuesday ready to walk at 10.30 am. The walks usually last between 30-60 minutes and follow various routes to cater for different abilities, which takes in a mixture of our Outdoor Gardens and our Mediterranean Biome. We walk rain or shine. At the end of the walk, everyone meets up for some well-deserved refreshments. 

Where: The Eden Project Visitor Centre café.

How: Come along for a free taster session – and if you want to join us again, you’ll then need a Locals’ Pass, Eden Project Membership or a health passport (£12) to come along, which allows entry to the Eden site for you and an accompanying carer. 

To find out more contact the Group Coordinator at Eden, Karen Dawkins, on 01726 818881 or or contact Jim, the Walk Leader, on 07724 036989.

About social prescribing at the Eden Project 

At the Eden Project we believe in the power of connecting people with each other and their environment – the power of people collectively doing things to improve their lives and the lives of others around them.

The Eden COPD Walking Group is part of Nature’s Way, a social prescribing programme that provides opportunities for people to connect and support each other in order to improve their health and wellbeing.

This programme is supported by the Pears Foundation and the Woodford Charitable Fund.