walking-book-club

What is a Walking Book Club?

The Walking Book Club is a little like a regular book club, except you and your book club take your meeting outside and walk while you talk.

The beauty and simplicity of a Walking Book Club is that it covers three essentials to a healthy brain – mental, physical and social activity.

Read, Walk and Talk your way to better brain health.

As John Medina, author of Brain Rules says,

The human brain became the most powerful in the world under conditions where motion was a constant presence.

Our fancy brains developed not while we were lounging around but while we were working out.

At the start of each month I’ll suggest a book for you to read and then a couple of weeks later (that is enough time to read a book, right?) I’ll provide questions to kick-start your discussion.

Already a member of a book club?  Take your next meeting outdoors and exercise your body as well as your mind – it’ll make a huge impact on your brain health!

How to start a Walking Book Club

Here are some tips to get you going…

  1. Choose 2 or 3 friends that are as passionate and motivated as you about brain health.
  2. Keep your group small.  It is easiest to discuss the book when only 3 or 4 of you are walking.
  3. Choose a route that you can cover in about one hour – roughly 4km at an average walking pace.
  4. Choose landmarks along the route that act as triggers for discussion, eg, choose a tree in the distance and discuss the first question until you walk past the tree.   Or get high-tech and use an app that measures distance.  I use an exercise app called Endomonodo.  Set it to announce when you have walked a set distance.  Discuss one question every 500 metres (or whatever distance you choose… brainstorm with your friends and come up with your own clever solution).

And, finish up a local cafe for a coffee. Neuroscientists have shown that coffee and friendships boost your brain health and reduce cognitive decline.

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Here are my Walking Book Club recommendations and questions from 2015/16…

FEBRUARY 2015Brain Rules by John Medina. 

MAY 2014 Walking Book ClubLeft Neglected by Lisa Genova 

APRIL 2014 Walking Book ClubThrive by Arianna Huffington.

MARCH 2014 Walking Book ClubThe Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by Oliver Sacks

FEBRUARY 2014 Walking Book Club – Saturday by Ian McEwan

DECEMBER Walking Book Club – The Kitchen God’s Wife by Amy Tan

NOVEMBER Walking Book Club – The World’s Strongest Librarian by Josh Hanagarne

OCTOBER Walking Book Club – My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor

SEPTEMBER Walking Book Club – The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

AUGUST Walking Book Club – The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

JULY Walking Book Club – Still Alice by Lisa Genova

JUNE Walking Book Club – The 100 year old man who climbed out a window by Jonas Jonasson

 

3 Responses to Walking Book Club

  1. I conduct literary tours as a hobby with one of my passions being English literature. Once I completed a degree in English it seemed the obvious route to go. I never thought of turning it into a Walking book Club as usually there is a destination with a guest speaker and a tour guide discussing merits of a book. I have done Eugene Marais, Conrad and Jane Austen this year. It is all so one sided though. The idea of dialogue is far better and I can see the immediate value of fixed stops and possibly a ‘soft measurement’ (discussion) at the end to assess reflection and retention and meaning derived from the walk. I will certainly try this now.

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