We know that being physically active is a great way to help you lead a healthier and happier life.
We also know that around age 11 girls experience a dramatic drop off in their physical activity levels and, in Australia, 90% of 11–17-year-old girls don’t get enough physical activity for good health.
Among other things, fear of failure, insecurities around body image and developing negative attitudes towards competitive sport and performative exercise play a role.
Talk N Walk is an exciting new app that has been co-designed with tween and teenage girls, to find a physical activity option that suits them and the stage they’re at in life. The program encourages and supports 11-14-year-old girls to swap catch ups on the couch with active ‘Talk N Walks’ in the park, on the way to school, around their neighbourhoods, or even at the shopping centre.
Download version 1 of Talk N Walk from your app store:
While often underrated, walking has many powerful and wide-ranging health benefits. It helps relieve everyday stresses, clears the mind, boosts your mood and promotes communication - to name just a few of them!
The program uses a Talk N Walk app that has been co-designed - from the initial idea through to how it looks and functions – with a project team of more than sixty 11–14-year-old girls from different cultural, linguistic, socioeconomic, and geographical backgrounds.
Talk N Walk app co-design process in pictures:
The result is a physical activity program that focuses on friendships, family and feeling good, not on competing, counting steps or calories.
“It’s funner [sic] when you’re socialising not just exercising...my friends have a good sense of humour and so I laugh a lot…” (app co-designers, St Hilda’s Junior School)
This program is important because by walking and talking together, with the encouragement of their friends and family, girls’ wellbeing and sense of belonging and community can be supported as they build a foundation for healthy lifestyles.
“everyone loves talking with their friends and [athletic] competition exercise gets very scary and nerve-wracking so it’s very good to have a chill physical activity option”. (App co-designer, 14yrs old, Mt Lawley SHS)
The Talk N Walk app is designed for 11-14 year old girls to use with their friends and/or family but may also appeal more broadly to young people 11-17 years old.