Driving for Exercise

The English police have made it very clear that you can drive for exercise as long as you are exercising for longer than you drive. I believe this is eminently sensible as it allow more effective social distancing. If you live in a city centre i.e. in Edinburgh or Glasgow everyone is trying to get their walking/jogging/exercise on congested streets. If people are able to take short 20-30 minute drives to less crowded areas then this will allow for much more effective social distancing during exercise. Of course there will be the added mental and physical benefits of allowing people to get more effective exercise and do so in a more socially responsible manner. Last, it allows poorer households that don't have access to a garden and opportunity to enjoy outdoor spaces without being overcrowded.

Why the contribution is important

This will allow people to get much needed physical and mental well being improvements while reducing the risk of spreading the covid-19 illness.

by alloha on May 05, 2020 at 01:51PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.4
Based on: 106 votes


  • Posted by bobbie18 May 05, 2020 at 13:55

    I really dont see the necessity of having to drive to exercise
  • Posted by Placemgt May 05, 2020 at 13:57

    The first weekend of lockdown resulted in 'city people' driving out to rural Scotland, swamping small villages, with local shops & pharmacies running out of supplies & stock. Any easing of lockdown needs to protect the islands & rural Scotland.
  • Posted by Sue24 May 05, 2020 at 13:58

    Driving a short distance to exercise provided social distancing is observed at the destination is important for those who cannot walk far to green spaces, or who have no green spaces nearby. The well being of the community needs to be addressed.
  • Posted by AMcD May 05, 2020 at 14:04

    I think this would be good - but only within local regions. Definitely no driving from the central belt to the Islands and rural Scotland for example, or to second homes, but as someone who lives in an urban environment i'd like to be able to access local country parks or beaches within a 10-20 mile radius that are currently closed to cars
  • Posted by wraightshepherd May 05, 2020 at 14:04

    Spreads the load of essential outdoor exercise from congested urban areas.
  • Posted by Agourlay May 05, 2020 at 14:04

    On the basis that they do not leave the car I believe this should be in place. Often people need to clear their head and being trapped in a house means that they have an isolated space where they can listen to music etc. Lots of people make unnecessary trips to shops to get out of the house or come into open air contact with others so I struggle to see why a car drive wouldn’t be acceptable as long as the person(s) do not leave the vehicle.
  • Posted by Fifer72 May 05, 2020 at 14:08

    Absolutely, drive for exercise, no social interaction outwith the car occupants and there is no risk. Tell people they are not allowed to interact outwith the car occupants and fine them if they do so. People will start doing this anyway so it is better managed by the government.
  • Posted by hellomynameis May 05, 2020 at 14:09

    Essential idea, people will start doing it anyway sooner or later. Fatigue of walking around the same urban streets is setting in for people living in cities.
  • Posted by PaulWG May 05, 2020 at 14:16

    The principle is not about driving, but whether you are increasing risk of catching the virus during a short drive. The answer, providing you are social distancing during that journey and where you park, it is immaterial. I personally now have to walk (with dog), cycle or run on (unlit) roads without pavements, or drive 5 mins to woodland or local town.
  • Posted by Nalcantara May 05, 2020 at 14:31

    Many of us are trapped in the city centre are having to exercise in crowded parks or walk through town crossing many people. A 20 minute drive would get you away from 99% of people and would help ease the stress of the whole situation.
  • Posted by FL May 05, 2020 at 14:33

    As someone in that ‘stuck alone in a small flat in the city centre with no green space at all’ and finding it impossible to go outside to exercise due to the busy congested streets since there are thousands of people packed in per square mile all using the narrow pavements I am crying out for this to be permitted. Even if we still need to exercise alone that’s fine but let us travel to a remote area where it is safe to do it so we can all get some time outdoors time - I’ve not been outside since mid March and my physical and mental health is very very bad now- if this goes on I hate to think what this will do to me and others like me. This is not a life I want to live.
  • Posted by Aa May 05, 2020 at 15:30

    Allowing driving a reasonable distance for exercise makes complete sense, much easier to physical distance in a forest than a city park or supermarket.
  • Posted by DrT May 05, 2020 at 16:00

    Seems a sensible idea.
  • Posted by Donald May 05, 2020 at 17:06

    Poor idea. Rural virus cases are generally low, so no need for others to come to these areas and transmit. The best option is all exercise with your region.
  • Posted by Rachel_T1502 May 05, 2020 at 18:21

    Totally agree, it is almost impossible to maintain social distancing on the pavements where I live, especially with all the people jogging etc, this despite people spilling significantly into the roads. I think it is a good point that people are making more unnecessary trips to higher risk places such as supermarkets for non-essential shopping possibly out of frustration, why not permit travel locally to green spaces and countryside for low risk outdoor activities, given the virus is quickly destroyed by UV light, for general well-being and mental health purposes and increased concordance with the lockdown as a whole. Perhaps keeping certain carparks, areas and facilities closed would be wise.
  • Posted by steves01x May 05, 2020 at 20:23

    Yes - we are lucky in Perth to be able to cycle and walk to 2 large urban green spaces (North and South Inches) but many others do not have this luxury. So many people just want an escape from their crowded local parks or to the forests. Or for others just a change to the daily route to help keep the kids sane and a change of scenery with a picnic.
  • Posted by GeoffDuke May 06, 2020 at 13:54

    People should be permitted to drive an acceptable distance to carry out their daily exercise without having to stay somewhere overnight. We did this early in our routines where everyone adhered to social distancing. In out city setting, we have not seen social distancing adhered to by at least 40% of the people we come across, especially cyclist groups on shared paths.
  • Posted by timk May 06, 2020 at 22:54

    Great plan but needs a distance limit
  • Posted by NKTC May 07, 2020 at 12:06

    This is not a good idea. Folk will spread infection outwith their local area (as they will touch things, leave rubbish, need to use facilities eg toilets, refuel vehicles etc), and risks too many people driving to honeypot locations where they wont be able to social distance. Stay local and drive only 20 minutes would be a better compromise that could also easily be checked and enforced.
  • Posted by Wilsmce May 07, 2020 at 15:52

    10-15 min drive at most.
  • Posted by CatK22 May 07, 2020 at 21:50

    If you live in an area that is popular for dogwalkers and others to visit you would be against this idea. No benefit to those residents. Large risks with geographically-dispersed people all travelling in.
  • Posted by Funkadelic May 08, 2020 at 08:32

    I support this idea but short drive only (25 mins or less for example). Living in a relatively rural market town that has all local countryside and beach car parks closed has resulted in hugely crowded local paths where social distancing is impossible - it’s not just cities that have this problem. Closing these car parks was an appropriate reaction to beauty spot crowding on the first weekend of lockdown when people were not well informed of the law, guidelines or benefits of social distancing. Wind the clock on a few months and these closures no longer benefit the reduction of the infection rate, in fact they appear to be risking it increasing. Trust your citizens to do the right thing.
  • Posted by WhyDoINeedAUserNameAgain May 08, 2020 at 15:47

    I agree with the points as they have been made by the OP Driving to places so a person can exercise; taking this decision and carrying it out reasonable and responsible manner is not something you will take away from me. The goal here is to prevent the spread of the virus, not punish people.
  • Posted by waxwing May 09, 2020 at 09:50

    Driving for exercise is already allowed! There is nothing in the regulations to prevent it. In England, police guidance has been revised to make this clear but for some reason this has not happened in Scotland.
  • Posted by JLMBD May 09, 2020 at 13:21

    There should be a strict distance limit if this is allowed, and it is completely unnecessary in remote communities and rural areas where walking from him is easy. No one should be going to remote areas of the Highlands and Islands unless they live there, it would kill some local residents who have struggled on alone to keep safe for weeks already.
  • Posted by conniel May 10, 2020 at 11:47

    My local area (city outskirts) is very busy with walkers, runners and cyclists. Keeping 2m distant without regularly stepping into the road can be difficult. We should be allowed to drive to a different area to engage in outdoor activity. It is much easier to maintain a greater distance from other people on the local hills, woods and beaches than in the city streets. There should be no limit on the time people are outdoors as long as they are keeping their distance from others. I would also prefer there to be no limit on the distance people could drive from their home, as long as they were required to return home at the end of their outdoor activity. If you limit the distance from home, this means that people from cities will be concentrated into fewer areas, making social distancing more difficult.
  • Posted by peterbrownbarra May 11, 2020 at 22:05

    exercise should be done adjacent to your house. maximum 1 mile away
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