The Daily Mile

 Linda Bailey 21 Jul 2017

Nearly 2,000 schools in the UK have signed up to participate in The Daily Mile.

This is an initiative aimed at improving the wellbeing of children in schools. All the children in the school are encouraged and supported to run for a mile each day during the school day.

They do this in their uniform, so don’t need time to change or any special kit, and there is no cost to the families or to the school. The children can walk, jog or run the mile so children with different physical abilities can take part.

The Daily Mile was started by head teacher Elaine Wyllie of St Ninian’s Primary School in Stirling, Scotland in 2011. In 2015 the school nurse for St. Ninian’s said there were no overweight children in year one at the school and they put this down to the success of The Daily Mile.

Ms Wyllie has since gone on to win numerous awards for her work including the Pride of Britain award, and she has a role in expanding the initiative across the UK.

The initiative has now been rolled out in Wales and there are already nearly 100 schools signed up. Over a quarter of children in reception year in Wales are overweight or obese and this programme is one way in which the Welsh government hopes to address the issue, as well as ensuring children’s underlying fitness is improved.

All nurses with an interest in public health can play a part. If you are a school nurse then encourage your school to sign up to the initiative through the website. If you are a parent or governor then you can put pressure on your local schools if they have not already signed up. It’s simple, it costs nothing and we know it is effective!







Linda Bailey

RCN Public Health Forum steering committee member

Consultant in public health

Linda began nursing in 1984 and was one of the first nurses in England to qualify for Fellowship of the Faculty of Public Health and membership of the UK Voluntary Register for Public Health in 2006. In 2013 she moved to south Wales where she works as consultant in public health for Public Health Wales.

Page last updated - 05/09/2018