Health and social care

Social distancing and your wellbeing

Find out about:


What social distancing means

See the latest government guidance on staying alert and safe (social distancing) before Saturday 4 July, staying safe after 4 July, and staying safe outside your home.

Find out about staying at home if your household has possible COVID-19 infection (self-isolation).

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Wellbeing during social distancing

Social distancing can be boring and frustrating. Your mood and feelings may be affected, you may feel low, worried, or have problems sleeping. You might miss being out of your home and being with other people. Take care of your mental wellbeing while staying at home.

Avoid unhealthy patterns of behaviour (which can make you feel worse), by doing simple things to stay mentally and physically well:

  • spend time doing things you enjoy, like reading, cooking, indoor hobbies, listening to the radio, watching TV
  • eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink enough water, exercise regularly, and try to avoid smoking, alcohol and drugs
  • open windows to let in fresh air, get natural sunlight, or go into the garden
  • find out about exercises you can do at home (NHS)

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Outdoor exercise while social distancing

Many rural areas such as parks, woodland and forests are suitable for exercising outdoors, whilst following government guidance on social distancing.

You can go outdoors if you stay more than 2 metres away from other people and avoid crowded areas. There are plenty of walking routes, of variable lengths, in and around York.

Simple routes include walking along either the River Ouse or the River Foss:

  • city centre to Beningborough: follow the River Ouse on the east bank heading north west
  • city centre to Bishopthorpe: follow the River Ouse on the west bank and head south west
  • Poppleton to Redhouse Wood: follow the River Ouse on the west bank and head north west

Ordnance Survey maps and apps such as Google Maps show public footpaths, cycle and walking routes in and around the city. Maps can be ordered online from most booksellers or specialist stores.

A number of online resources are available to help guide you when getting out and about, with details of walks in rural areas in and around the city:

The iTravel wildlife walks booklet is also available in printed form from York Explore and Acomb Explore.

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Also see