WALKING is one of the simplest form of exercises, requiring nothing more than being blessed with the use of your limbs and a decent pair of shoes. So simple perhaps, that many have dismissed it entirely as a form of exercise.

Yet what do you do when time is of the essence, you aspire to a healthy mind in healthy body, and given the current circumstances, you can’t rely on the gyms being open? The answer might lie in walking.

You should aim for 150 minutes of cardiovascular exercise split into periods of 20 minutes or more. Yet the benefits of walking can be realised in as little as 10 minutes a day.

Walking on its own is less likely to appeal to persons wishing for a highly muscular physique, but it may be the only form of cardiovascular exercise you need. There are numerous pros, from increased mobility and a reduction in joint pains, through to heightened creativity and a greater sense of purpose.

Studies have demonstrated that movement can lessen the pains of arthritis by building up the muscles round worn joints. Walking is good for anxiety and/or depression.

It has been demonstrated that doing just one thing a day every day, gives you a greater feeling of being organised, allowing you to achieve more. Imagine that half an hour stroll at lunchtime as your time to relax and unwind.

Regularly performed, walking will help to bring down raised blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. While you may not notice a great deal of weight loss (the average 30-minute walk at three miles per hour burns roughly 200 calories), you may find that the weight you carry round your middle lessens. .

Regular walking is associated with increased cognitive function and reduced risk of dementia. As a weight bearing exercise, it will help to counteract the reduction in bone mineral density and muscle bulk that is an inevitable part of the ageing process. Regular walkers are also less likely to fall.

There has been much made of achieving 10,000 steps a day, but the beauty of walking should really be in the journey and the sights and sounds it affords, as opposed to the end destination.

By being creative, walking can be fitted into your routine in such a way that it doesn’t seem regimented and that you may even look forward to it, either on your own as a form of “me time”, or with friends and family to enjoy the social benefits as well.