Featured Image

New Study Shows Massive Decline in Time People Spend Walking—But a Surge in Bike Riding

A new study has revealed a concerning decline in the amount of time people are walking as part of their daily routine, raising both health and environmental concerns.

According to Streetlight Data, there was a 36% drop in daily walking trips between 2019 to 2022. Streetlight Data is a company focused on compiling transportation data for organizations like state departments of transportation and other similar agencies. The company’s new report says the decline in walking was evident in every metro and state they analyzed in the contiguous United States.

Why Walking Matters

There are two reasons why this is bad news. The first is the simple power of getting outdoors and the health benefits of a simple walk. Numerous studies say a stroll down the street helps combat weight gain, improves a person’s immune system, eases joint pain, and even reduces the risks of certain cancers.

Secondly, walking to a nearby business or restaurant is better for the environment than getting in your car. Streetlight Data’s study says, “Walking activity is also critical for meeting climate goals and commitments. Communities focused on lowering transportation emissions want to see fewer trips taken in vehicles and more trips taken on foot.”

The report highlights that many cities and states saw a significant decline between 2019 and 2020 due to the pandemic. With many businesses closed and vast amounts of people working from home, it makes sense that fewer people went for a walk as a means to get around. However, many areas have struggled to rebound in the years following compared to the number of people who have gotten back behind the wheel of a car. 

fewer people walking

In total, 43 states saw a continued decline in walking trips. Those that increased in recent years still have yet to return to 2019 numbers.

Some Positive News

However, a few cities show optimism for the future, including Los Angeles, San Diego, and Modest, California, which has the largest increase in walkers from 2021 to 2022. In fact, the nine cities with increasing numbers of walkers are all in the Golden State. The positive news is surprising for car-centric California, despite its year-round pleasant weather. 

Here’s some other good news: More people are riding bikes as an alternative in many places. When you add bicycles to the formula for “active transportation,” there’s been an increase. Bike riding trips nationwide have surged by 37% since the pandemic. 

What do you think it will take to get more people walking?

shoes for walking
Featured Image

Best Mushroom Coffee: Which One’s Right for You?

Featured Image

Bride’s Sister Turns Snake Wrangler at Arizona Wedding

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top