Members of Wolverhampton's health and wellbeing board have given their backing to a new strategy designed to help more people in Wolverhampton get active.

With data showing that physical activity levels among both adults and children in Wolverhampton remain low, the city's health and wellbeing board, Wolverhampton Health and Wellbeing Together, has developed a draft Physical Activity Strategy. It was considered by members of the board on Thursday (7 December, 2023), who have approved its implementation.

Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Adults and Wellbeing and chair of the Health and Wellbeing Together board, said: “Physical inactivity is responsible for a staggering 1 in 6 deaths in our city. If we are truly going to make a difference to life expectancy, we must find a way of helping our residents to be more active.

“I firmly believe that this very complex issue needs to be tackled in partnership as a city. That's why Wolverhampton Health and Together Wellbeing Board is best positioned to lead on this crucial piece of work.”

The strategy and associated action plans are designed to inspire and support adults and children to move more and build activity into their daily lives. They focus on 4 themes:

  • Active Wulfrunians – creating a city where everyone is physically active every day and understands the benefits of being active and how to be active in a way that suits their ability.
  • Active City – creating and promoting suitable activities, programmes and infrastructure which enable residents to engage in regular physical activity that meets their needs.
  • Active Spaces and Places – creating a city where community spaces are enhanced, invested in and protected, and which encourage and promote physical activity.
  • Active Systems – working collaborative as a whole system to create leadership, governance and partnerships that enable practice and protocols to promote physical activity across all sectors.

Councillor Jaspal continued: “Whatever your age, there's strong scientific evidence that being physically active can help you lead a healthier and happier life and reduce your risk of developing major illnesses like coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer.

"It can also boost your self esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy levels, as well as reducing your risk of stress, depression and dementia.

"We also recognise that being healthy and feeling good is about more than simply not being ill; lots of different factors shape our health and wellbeing – where we live, our education, income, the type of job we do, our lifestyles, access to green spaces, and the connections we have with other people.

"Through this strategy we want, as a city, to create an environment where our residents can live longer, healthier and more active lives, and where every child in the city has the best start in life.

"This is an exciting chance for stakeholders to work together to make Wolverhampton a city that helps its residents to get moving more, and to enjoy the many benefits that enjoying an active lifestyle can offer."