Press Release: The Daily Mile founder receives MBE for her services to the fitness of children


  • The Daily Mile’s Founder, Elaine Wyllie, has received an MBE for ‘Services to the fitness of children’ in the New Year’s Honours list. Speaking at Buckingham Palace today, she said: ““In just a year, we have experienced monumental growth and now have 1.75 million children across 61 countries quite literally taking steps towards a healthier future with The Daily Mile.”
  • In just one year, The Daily Mile has grown by 150% with 1.75 million children now running for 15 minutes every day.
  • Over 5,000 UK schools and a further 3,000 schools across 61 countries now take part in The Daily Mile.

Elaine Wyllie, the founder of the well-known children’s fitness initiative, The Daily Mile, has received an MBE for services to the fitness of children as part of the New Year’s Honours list.

The recognition follows an incredible year of growth in which The Daily Mile’s popularity skyrocketed by 150%. Now over 8,200 schools in 61 countries with a total of 1.75 million children signed up to the life changing initiative aiming to make children fit for life. The initiative is now in 1/5th of schools in England, 1/3rd of Welsh schools and half of schools in Scotland.

Just six years ago the initiative was taking place at a single primary school in Stirling. Concerned about the children’s lack of physical fitness, The Daily Mile’s Founder, Elaine Wyllie, decided to get her pupils moving for 15 minutes every day to improve their overall fitness and wellbeing.

The Daily Mile is proven to work. Backed by hard evidence the initiative has been shown to improve children’s fitness, body composition and concentration in class. In the last 12 months it has been included as a key measure in the UK Government’s Childhood Obesity Strategy – which aims to halve all childhood obesity by 2030; it has earned praise from Prime Minister Theresa May and cross-party MPs; and has developed strong partnerships with ITV, Sport England and London Marathon Events.

Speaking at her investiture ceremony, Elaine said: “In just a year, we have experienced monumental growth and now have 1.75 million children across 61 countries quite literally taking steps towards a healthier future with The Daily Mile. I am delighted by the growth but hope this is just the start! Our aim is to provide every child, at every school, the opportunity to experience the benefits of doing The Daily Mile.”


Elaine Wyllie with MBE at Buckingham Palace


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Press Release: Greater Manchester businesses urged to move more and follow hundreds of local schools in joining The Daily Mile


  • Greater Manchester celebrates one year on from announcing its commitment to become the world’s first Daily Mile city-region
  • Extra Greater Manchester primary schools getting involved in The Daily Mile at a rate of three a week
  • Businesses now called on to join the initiative – with HSBC and Spinningfields leading the way by committing to daily workplace walking

More than 350 primary schools across Greater Manchester have introduced physical movement as an everyday part of their pupils’ lives with 154 doing so over the past 12 months.

The figure has been announced as Greater Manchester celebrates the first anniversary of its commitment to become the world’s first Daily Mile city-region. It means that three new schools a week have got involved in The Daily Mile since Mayor Andy Burnham announced the city region’s ambition.

The Daily Mile Children Fit For Life initiative is backed by a range of government departments and agencies and aims to improve outcomes for children and young people through embedding consistent physical movement into a daily routine. 42% of Greater Manchester’s primary schools are now taking part. Meanwhile the Fit For Life programme is targeted at adults.

£2 million of funding by the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership back Greater Manchester’s Daily Mile commitment.

Sara Tomkins, CEO of GreaterSport, said: “It’s fantastic to see so many extra schools and nurseries taking part in the Daily Mile, and now our first businesses too. But with 6 in 10 Greater Manchester children and 1 in 3 working adults not doing the recommended amount of activity each day, there’s still more to do to ensure our children and adults alike remain happy and healthy.”

As well as supporting 75% of the city region’s schools to join in The Daily Mile by 2021, this investment aims to extend the benefits of daily movement across the population, including by creating workplaces that are more active.

HSBC’s Spinningfields office is one of the first city region workplaces to back the ambition, encouraging its entire staff to complete a mile walk during the working weekday (the walk will be daily from next Tuesday). They are working with Spinningfields to encourage employees across Spinningfields to join The Daily Mile.

Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, the city region Walking and Cycling Commissioner Chris Boardman and The Daily Mile founder Elaine Wyllie visited the city centre office to join HSBC staff on their walk, and call on more Greater Manchester businesses to get on board and support workers to walk for 15 minutes a day.

Mayor Andy Burnham, said: “It’s inspiring that so many of our schools and nurseries have embraced The Daily Mile, encouraging more and more children to make consistent daily walking a natural part of their day. Today, I challenge businesses across our great sporting city-region to follow in their footsteps. By making time, creating opportunity and positively encouraging their staff to walk more, employers can make a valuable contribution to improving the health, wealth and well-being of our city-region.” 

Chris Boardman, added: “50% of adults in Greater Manchester are currently inactive and an astonishing 30% of trips taken in the car are under 1km which is an equivalent walking time of just 15 minutes. We want to see more people making short trips by foot and we’re asking businesses to help us to normalise walking by signing up to a Daily Mile commitment.”

Getting more people to consider sustainable travel options is also a key objective for Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM). Last year the Mayor launched the Greater Manchester Congestion Deal, which laid out a series of short to long-term measures aimed at reducing congestion on the region’s roads.

Peter Boulton, TfGM’s Head of Highways, said: “Congestion is currently a major issue affecting the long-term economic potential of the city region as well as the health of its residents.

“While there are many factors that cause congestion, two of the most obvious are the number of journeys made at peak times by vehicles carrying only one occupant and those that travel short distances by car for say, a school run.

“Schemes like The Daily Mile are fantastic in encouraging more people, especially young people, to think differently about how they travel. Just simple things like walking to school or work can make a big difference to congestion and an even bigger difference to people’s health.”

Sam Roden, Manchester Business Banking Area Director for HSBC UK, said: “Too many people work all day without a break, eating their lunch at their desk and not taking time away from a screen. Walking is great for your physical and mental wellbeing, and also leads to greater productivity. I’m passionate about The Daily Mile and proud to be leading the introduction of this important initiative with Manchester’s business community.”

Elaine Wyllie, former head teacher and founder of The Daily Mile, said: “It’s wonderful to see The Daily Mile being championed across Greater Manchester in all settings from nursery and primary schools, to workplaces! I look forward to seeing more people getting involved as Greater Manchester becomes the world’s first Daily Mile city-region.”



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Research gives insight into children’s attitudes to sport and physical activity

Source: Sport England

Date: 21-March-2019

Enjoyment is the single biggest factor in motivating children to be active, new analysis from Sport England’s Active Lives Children and Young People Survey has revealed. More than 130,000 children and young people were surveyed in the academic year 2017/18, with participation figures published in December.

This new analysis has identified five key findings that gives further insight into the attitudes of children and young people towards sport and physical activity. The five key findings are:

  1. Physically literate children do twice as much activity. The more of the five elements of physical literacy – enjoyment, confidence, competence, understanding and knowledge – children have, the more active they are.
  2. Enjoyment is the biggest driver of activity levels. Despite the majority of children (68%) understanding that sport and activity is good for them, understanding had the least impact on activity levels.
  3. Children who have all five elements of physically literacy report higher levels of happiness, are more trusting of other children, and report higher levels of resilience (continuing to try if you find something difficult).
  4. Physical literacy decreases with age. As children grow older, they report lower levels of enjoyment, confidence, competence, and understanding. Previous research from Sport England shows that activity levels drop when children reach their teenage years.
  5. The results also reveal important inequalities among certain groups of children which must be tackled

Currently, around three million children and young people (43.3%) are active, but a third of children (32.9%) are less active, doing less than 30 minutes of activity a day. The results prove for the first time that children’s physical literacy impacts not only the amount of activity they do, but also how much they benefit from this activity.

And now Sport England’s Chief Executive, Tim Hollingsworth, is calling for everyone involved in a child’s activity level to ensure that enjoyment is at the heart of anything they do.

This article has been reproduced with the kind permission of the content creator, Sport England. To read the article in full, please click the link below.

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