Resources to make the outdoors accessible to all
Do you feel you are unable to be active due to a disability, health condition or additional need? Would you like to be more active but don't know where to start or have the resources? There are a lot of groups out there who are trying to make the outdoors a safe space for all, here are just some of them, and some information which might help you to get started.
Adventure Queens Hiking Programme
The Adventure Queens are launching a new hiking programme for women new to/returning to hiking who feel unable to join existing community hikes at present due to low fitness and/or long term health conditions or injury. It will enable participants to build confidence, fitness and gain experience on different terrain in a safe and supportive group, led by a qualified Hill and Moorland Leader. The programme is based in Derbyshire. Read the blog post about how to apply here:
Photo: Jeni Smith
Muslim Hikers is a community group set up to encourage Muslims to get outside, though anyone is welcome. Inspiring Muslims to get outdoors, the group aims to inspire and empower Muslim communities to get involved.
The Muslim Hikers teamed up with Adidas TERREX and Wiggle in a bid to make the outdoors a more inclusive space. The group teamed up with the brands in a partnership to identify the barriers with praying outdoors, creating bespoke prayer mats to enable more Muslims to pray more comfortably when hiking. Signs pointing in the direction of Mecca have also been placed in the Peak District, along one of its most popular hiking routes, Cave Dale, in Derbyshire.
Adaptive Adventurers is a social enterprise focused on enabling all adventurers to access the outdoors, regardless of their ability, disability or health status. It was founded by Kate Appleby, who believes the outdoors should be accessible by all. Kate, a chronic illness sufferer, recognised the huge gap in the outdoors community, for an inclusive and all-encompassing approach to engagement, but often barriers exist to prevent this cohesion. Visit the website to find out more about grants and funding; Outdoors Adventure | Adaptive Adventurers (adaptive-adventurers.com)
Komoot Women's Rally
The first komoot Women’s Rally was a direct response to women often being underrepresented in cycling, and it was clear from the first rally that endurance cyclist Lael Wilcox and komoot were onto something special. The komoot Women’s Rally events aim to connect, unite and breakdown the barriers in adventure cycling by making adventures by bike more accessible to women of all backgrounds.
The goal of each Rally is to share knowledge, learn-by-doing and above all else, have fun. After the success of the 2021 and 2022 komoot Women's Rally events, komoot launches a series of 3 rally events in 2023.
Peaks of Colour
Peaks of Colour is a Peak District-based nature-for-healing club by and for people of colour only. Launched in July 2021, Peaks of Colour is intersectional, trauma-informed, LGBT+ inclusive and is founded on the Black and Abolitionist Feminist ethos’s of radical self care, rest as resistance, healing justice, community care and nature therapy.
Their walks are informal yet intimate, offering a brave space to explore nature and the wellbeing benefits it offers.
The Autistic Guide to Adventure
Outdoor adventuring can be life changing - it makes you physically and mentally stronger, takes you to new places and introduces you to new friends, as well as being an exhilarating challenge - but it can be stressful when there are unexpected social and sensory challenges involved.
Autistic people can find certain situations overwhelming, stressful or uncomfortable. In this book, The Autistic Guide to Adventure (Jessica Kingsley Publishers), Allie Mason, who is autistic, discusses activities. These range from archery to stargazing, sailing to fossil hunting, snorkelling to nature-writing. Including personal anecdotes and interviews with awesome autistic athletes, this book will give you the support you need to take on the great outdoors.
Wheelchair Friendly Walks
Julia Bradbury has developed a website, Wheelchair Friendly Walks all around the country with The Outdoor Guide, which has wheel-friendly walks across the UK. The blog is full of helpful and practical advice including reviews of all terrain wheelchairs.
An outright purchase of an all terrain wheelchair can be expensive, but some places hire them out free of charge. Many National Trust sites do this.