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Half of people in Wales do no exercise

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Screen Shot 2016-05-19 at 10.08.52BRITAIN is a nation of couch potatoes with almost half of us failing to undertake any cardio exercise whatsoever, according to new research which adds that 51% of us living in Wales also don’t participate in any.

The study also revealed that people in Northern Ireland were the biggest couch potatoes in the whole of the UK with a massive 58% admitting to no cardio exercise whatsoever. This compared with 47%, in England, 51%, in Wales and 53% in Scotland.

The study, undertaken by YouGov on behalf of leading sports nutrition company Predator Nutrition, looked at the lifestyle habits of more than 2,000 men and women from across the UK.

Almost half, 48%, said they did no cardio exercise at all with a further 25% saying they did one hour a week or less.

That means only around one quarter of the population are exercising for more than an hour each week.

Women were more likely to be couch potatoes than men with 50% of all women saying they did no cardio compared with 45% of men.

More than two thirds of Britons don’t bother to train with weights with only 31% of those questioned ever bothering to pick up a dumbbell.

Almost three quarters of women, 73%, don’t do any strength training at all compared with almost two thirds, 64%, of UK men. Almost one in five of us, 19%, said climbing an average flight of stairs would leave us out of breath, with 3% saying they would be gasping for air by the top.

Worryingly it seems more and more of us are choosing to spend our free time sitting around on our backsides with 8% admitting to sitting down for 11 hours or more every day. While more than a third, 34%, said they sat down for at least seven hours every day.

The study also revealed that a massive 16% of UK adults admitted to eating sugary and processed food every day while almost two thirds of us, 65%, said they ate them at least once each week.

Only a tiny minority, 6%, claimed to eat their recommended five portions of fruit and veg each week with 2% saying they ate no fruit and veg whatsoever and more than a fifth, 22%, saying they ate less than seven portions a week.

A spokesman for Predator Nutrition said: “With obesity on the rise in the UK it is disappointing to discover that so many of us are still not finding the time to exercise.

“We were shocked to discover that only about half of Britons bother to get any form of cardio exercise at all.

“Working out with weights can have a massive impact on our fitness levels and our weight – yet less than a third of adults train their muscles.

“Only a quarter of women and a third of men bother to work out with weights despite this being a highly efficient way to exercise.

“It seems many people are still intimidated by weight training yet combined with cardio exercise there are proven health benefits.

“We hope our study will highlight that more needs to be done to encourage people to quit their bad habits and adopt a healthier lifestyle.”

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Education

Delight as foundation phase learners return to class

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PEMBROKESHIRE Headteachers have reported very positive returns to school for Foundation Phase Learners.

All Foundation Phase Learners returned to schools on Monday, March 1st and attendance has been reported at almost 90% since.

The Council’s Director for Education, Steven Richards-Downes, said: “A wide range of council services have worked together to ensure that Foundation Phase pupils have been able to return
safely to school.

“I am particularly grateful to all school staff and families for ensure that learning is now available for our youngest learners face to face.”

Headteachers remarked how schools have filled with smiles and laughter following the safe and phased return of Foundation Phase learners.

Cora O’Brien, Headteacher at Waldo Williams School in Haverfordwest emphasised how quickly learners have settled back in to a routine.

“It has been an absolute joy to hear their laughter in the playground and to observe their love of learning face to face once again. I thank everybody in the Waldo Williams School
community for working so hard to ensure that the transition went smoothly.”

Vicky Hart-Griffiths, Headteacher of Ysgol Hafan y Mor in Tenby, said: “It has been wonderful to welcome all our Foundation Phase learners back to school. They are thriving, being amongst
friends and back to a school routine.  

“All the pupils have spoken about how happy they are to have returned and it’s an absolute pleasure to welcome them back and we can’t wait until we have all our pupils back in school.

“The school feels alive again and there’s a positive buzz and laughter once again echoing throughout the school.”

Gareth Lewis, Headteacher at Broad Haven CP School said children had returned “with real enthusiasm, and have been very keen to meet up with their friends.”

Mr Lewis added: “Our parents have been very supportive and positive about the return, and those with older children are very much looking forward to a wider return to schooling.”

Mr Richards-Downes said plans were now turning to more learners returning to schools in the near future.

“We are looking to the next phases of the re-opening of schools on the 15th of March as long as the government guidelines allow.”

Further details will be released in due course.

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Pembrokeshire County Council: This week’s Leader’s coronavirus update

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PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL Leader, Councillor David Simpson, has provided a further coronavirus update for Friday, 5th March as follows:

‘Welcome everyone to my weekly update.

“It is with rather a heavy heart that I tell you that it’s almost 12 months since my first statement on the coronavirus pandemic.

“On 9th March 2020, I addressed our Cabinet meeting with the following words:

“Further to the news yesterday that two people in Pembrokeshire had tested as positive for the Covid 19 virus, I am sure you will join me in wishing them both a speedy and full recovery.

“I can reassure you that our services will continue as usual, and all our employees can continue to attend to their work, appointments, schools and services as they normally would.

“We should all help protect ourselves and our communities by following Public Health Wales advice, particularly around washing hands and using a tissue for symptoms associated with cold and flu and then safely disposing of it.

“I am grateful to the co-operation and hard work of all of our staff and we will provide further updates and information when we have them.

“In the meantime I can confirm that detailed planning arrangements, both internally, with partner agencies and through the Dyfed Powys Local Resilience Forum, are well underway to ensure that the Council and Pembrokeshire are as well placed as possible for whatever challenges we may face. Thank you.”

“I am sure you will join me while I take a moment now to remember all those people in Pembrokeshire and further afield, who, very sadly, passed away since I made that announcement.

“I continue to be incredibly grateful, as I’m sure you are, to everyone who is helping to beat this pandemic, working so very hard now for over a year.

“We are fortunate now to be in a position where the vaccine programme is protecting older members of our community and starting to roll out among one of the biggest groups – the over 65s and those with underlying health conditions.

“This time next week (12th March) the Welsh Government will have notified us of their plans for the next three weeks.

“In the meantime, we remain in Alert Level 4 and the stay at home message continues to be more important than ever as we reach the threshold of better times.

“I wish you all a good weekend and thank you once again to the vast majority of wonderful Pembrokeshire residents who are doing the right thing and waiting patiently at home for restrictions to lift.

“We do really appreciate your efforts and determination to help bring this pandemic to an end.”

 

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Sergeant Hillier ‘died doing the job he loved’, says his heartbroken father

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THE ARMY SERGEANT who died after being injured in a live firing exercise, has been named locally.

The incident occurred at Castlemartin Training Area, and led to the death of Sgt Gavin Hillier, who was in the Welsh Guards.

In a post on social media, his father wrote: “Absolutely devastated to be writing this post, probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do.

“At 3.45am this morning I received a phone call that will forever change my life. My eldest son Gavin Mark Hillier was in a fatal accident yesterday in the army (the job he loved).

“Sleep tight & rest in peace son. I’m so proud of you. Goodnight and god bless, love your heartbroken dad.”

An Army spokesperson said: “It is with great sadness we can confirm the death of a soldier on March 4.

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this tragic time.

“The circumstances surrounding this death are being investigated and it would be inappropriate to comment any further.”

It is understood that Sergeant Hillier, who served as part of the Welsh Guards’ motor transport platoon, was due to be deployed to Iraq and had previously been awarded a Long Service and Good Conduct medal by Prince Charles, the regiment’s Colonel in Chief, in 2019.

The tragic incident is the latest in a number of accidents at Castlemartin.

In 2017, The Herald reported that two soldiers died in a tank explosion, which a coroner ruled was due to a design flaw.

The following year, an Army captain was jailed in July 2018 after a 21-year-old soldier was killed by a stray bullet during an exercise at the range in 2012.

An investigation has been launched into the death of a soldier at Castlemartin RAC Range following a military exercise.

Police were called to the site at just before 10.45pm on March 4.

Sadly, a man was pronounced dead shortly after. Our thoughts are with his family, who have been informed of the incident and are being supported by specialist officers.

An investigation is underway led by Dyfed-Powys Police. Officers are liaising with the Health and Safety Executive and MoD.

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