Interested in taking part in the Depaul UK’s Weighted Walk? We’ve answered all your questions here.

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General Weighted Walk FAQs

What is the Depaul UK Weighted Walk Challenge?

We are asking you to carry a weighted backpack so that young people experiencing homelessness,  forced to carry everything they own, don’t have to. Choose a route, a distance and a weight to carry on your back, and raise money.

When does it take place?

Throughout 2023 – you can take on your own Weighted Walk at any time.

How do I take part?

  • Register here and set up your fundraising page. Decide on your fundraising target, and ask your family and friends to sponsor you.
  • Decide what to carry in your backpack and the route for your walk. Don’t forget to pack food and water to get you through the day.
  • Pick the day and get walking, invite your friends to join you, take pictures and share on your social media using the hashtag #WeightedWalk.

Why weighted walking?

Our Weighted Walk challenge (also known as “Rucking”) is a great way to keep fit, lose weight and it even burns more calories than walking! It will help you build strength in your shoulders, back and stomach, improving your posture. It’s gentler on the joints than running, gets you outdoors and challenges you!

Who can take part?

Anyone! But please ensure you have the right amount of fitness to ensure you can take part safely. Please make sure your chosen weight is challenging, but not so much that you risk injuring yourself. Depaul UK accepts no responsibility for injury sustained during this challenge.

Can I take part in a group/with friends?

Of course! Go solo, or take on the event with family and friends.

Why is this event helping young people?

The young people we support have to carry everything they own on their back but also hold the weight of the world on their shoulders as they navigate through their journey through homelessness. We are asking you to carry that load so young people people don’t have to. Money raised from this challenge will help ensure we can continue to be there for young people experiencing or at risk of being homeless.

How does the money I raise help young people?

We run a range of services for young people who are homeless, many of whom are traumatized by their previous experiences. Our Nightstop project offers young people a safe, warm bed, a meal, laundry facilities, a listening ear and a friendly welcome for those with nowhere safe to stay. We offer all young people in our services help with their mental health and wellbeing and support to access education, training and employment, together with independent living skills. Above all we nurture a sense of self-belief and hope in young people to enable them to get their lives back on track and look forward to a brighter future where they can fulfil their potential.

How can I get my sponsorship to you? 

If you raise any money outside of your online fundraising page, you can pay in your sponsorship money directly to us using our donate page here.

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On the day

What do I need?

You will need a backpack and weight to put in your backpack (this could be filled water bottles or books, for example), a pair of comfortable walking boots/shoes, and your standard exercise clothing appropriate for the weather. Make sure to pack enough water and food for your walk.

How far should I walk?

You can set the distance and time of your walk to suit you, making sure that it is appropriate to your fitness level.

How much weight should I carry?

The weight you carry is up to you, but needs to be appropriate to your weight and fitness level.

What can I pack?

You will need to pack your bag with your chosen weight. You can wrap your weights in a towel or bubble wrap to help keep the weight stable and balanced on your back. Remember to pack plenty of drinking water, as well as some snacks for your walk.

What time should I take part?

It’s up to you, take on the weighted walk challenge at a time to suit you.
What do I need to do on the day? Load up your backpack with your chosen weight and head out on your walk!

What can I do after the walk?
Post your pictures to social media, using the hashtag #weightedwalk and tagging Depaul UK in your posts. Thank your friends and family for supporting you and have a well-earned rest! You could even try to drum up some last-minute donations for your fundraiser.

Staying safE

What type of bag should I carry?

To ensure that weight is well distributed, we would recommend carrying a bag with hip and chest straps as well as shoulder straps. Padding to the back and shoulders can also make carrying a weight more comfortable. If you have existing injuries or concerns about carrying weight on your back, please consult a medical professional.

How do I avoid injury?

If you have existing injuries or concerns about carrying weight on your back, please consult a medical professional. You may also wish to refer to the advice of the Health and Safety Executive here.

I haven’t done this type of event before, how do I carry my weighted bag safely?

If you have existing injuries or concerns about carrying weight on your back, please consult a medical professional. Good equipment including comfortable, supportive footwear and an appropriate backpack will also make your weighted walk safer. We would recommend completing some training walks to find out what is comfortable for you to carry and what distance is suitable for your fitness level. Find more general advice here.

How do I keep safe on my weighted walk?

Ensure that your equipment is appropriate for the conditions of your walk, and that you have appropriate food, water and first-aid supplies to hand. Stay on marked footpaths and let a friend or family member know where you’re going and when you’ll be back, if you’re walking alone.

What should I do in the event of extreme weather?

Please check the forecast for your area and make a personal choice. You can always move your walk to another day!



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