Macmillan Move More Gardening Hints And Tips

Gardening - blooming marvellous for your health

If you’ve been affected by cancer, being physically active can improve your quality of life and increase your life expectancy. It can help reduce the risk of recurrence of certain cancers and help you cope with some of the side effects of treatment.  That’s why The National Gardens Scheme, alongside our President, Joe Swift, and Macmillan Cancer Support are encouraging people to get moving.

Gardening is a great way to get active. You can improve your strength, endurance, mobility and flexibility, with a range of activities to suit all ages, abilities, energy levels and gardens. 

If you don’t have a garden, why not get creative with patio or window pots, get involved with a community garden scheme or enjoy a walk around an NGS garden.

‘I really believe in the positive health benefits that even a short length of time gardening can bring you.’

Joe Swift, TV presenter and President of The National Gardens Scheme

To help you get growing, mowing or sowing, NGS gardeners have kindly shared some gardening hints and tips.

Former cancer sufferer, Phillip Hunt, from Flintshire, says " days were filled with interest and excitement as I moved from one job to another, I was never bored, nothing was a chore and every night I retired to bed looking forward to the positivities of the following day."

Find out more

*Macmillan can support you in getting into, or back into, physical activity.  Visit to request an information pack, or call the Macmillan Support Line free on 0808 808 0000 (Monday to Friday, 9am-8pm).

Your cancer type, treatment or any other conditions you have may influence the sort of activity that’s best for you.   As with any physical activity please speak to your cancer specialist or your GP before you start.

Why is gardening so blooming marvellous for your health?

• Activities like digging and mowing the lawn can require the same energy levels as walking, cycling and swimming.

• Tasks such as carrying watering cans, pushing wheelbarrows or lifting plant pots help to strengthen muscles and bones and are good for your heart and blood flow.

• Weeding, planting and pruning can be great for stretching, which helps to improve your flexibility.

• Gardening also helps develop hand eye coordination, which improves motor skills and movement.

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