Skip to main content

Physical activity

Get Moving: Active Sitting Program

More than ever, one of the best things an older person can do to stay healthy and maintain independence is to be physically active.

Poor health and dependence are not inevitable consequences of aging. Scientific evidence indicates that as people age, genetic inheritance decreases in importance, while lifestyle and environmental factors become more important to health.

Research has shown that through regular physical activity, older adults can help prevent or delay some diseases and disabilities.

Age Well DVD Cover

Now available in eight languages

  • Arabic
  • Cantonese
  • English
  • French
  • Mandarin
  • Somali
  • Spanish
  • Vietnamese

Get Moving: Active Sitting Program Multilingual DVD and Manual

This easy to follow 30-minute DVD and user’s guide present physical activity geared for older adults with a low level of activity. Seniors with some physical limitations will also benefit from Get Moving. The program was developed with the expertise of local physiotherapists and a senior’s fitness instructor.

Get Moving: Active Sitting Program Multilingual DVD and Manual

Note: the manual is available in French/English only
Individual copies $12 each.
Available at: The Good Companions (613-236-0428)

Get Moving: Active Sitting Program in English and French only can be purchased at the Centre de services Guigues (613-241-1266) for $12.

Copies are also available for loan from your local library.

Filmed at the Centretown Community Health Centre, the Get Moving: Active Sitting Program was developed through the work of the Seniors Health Promotion Coalition, a member of Partners in Healthy Living, in partnership with the Older Adult Action Team of Active Ottawa.

For information about physical activity and seniors’ health, contact the Ottawa Public Health Information Line at 613-580-6744

The Woman Alive Program

The Woman Alive/Femme active Program offers affordable physical activity opportunities to women living on limited income in order to increase their capacity to care for their own health. The Woman Alive Leader's Manual displays how partnerships between two or more agencies can be an excellent method of pooling resources to offer an effective and affordable program. The program also provides the participant with an environment that allows for positive social interactions and cultural sensitivity.  

Come join the program at any of the locations below.  If you have questions about the program, please call the location you would like to attend.

For additonal health information or resources please call Ottawa Public Health at 613-580-6744.


Why walk? 

Walking takes you places! For recreation or purpose, walking improves your health and can give you the most enjoyable moments in your day.

Walking is free! Choosing to use your feet saves you money on gas and parking fees.

Need more reasons to walk?  In bouts of 10 minutes or more, brisk walking will help you meet recommendations found in the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines .

Where to walk

Walking can take you where you need to go.  If the journey is too long, combine your walk with OC Transpo routes.

Explore your neighbourhood and your city while being active. Map out your walk at Map my Walk Ottawa

Walk near your local library after borrowing a good read! Use Ottawa Public Library Branch walking maps.

Enjoy nature? Hike and walk on the Capital pathways, parks and greenbelt area with beautiful views of nature you would have otherwise missed!

Taking your dog for a walk?  Find new places to explore with the Ottawa Dog Park Finder and Dog walking in Ottawa's Greenbelt .

Ontario Trails Council Ottawa Region gives you local information on trail maps and distances.  

Join a local walking group.

Choose walks that give back!  Ottawa Charity Walks

Useful walking tools

Borrow a pedometer using your library card at any Ottawa Public Library branch.

Try the Ottawa Public Health Walking Log to compare your step count on different walks.

Use the Smartphone app to track your walking activities.

Consult the Ottawa Neighbourhood Study to find out how walkable your neighbourhood is.

Pedestrian Safety

Whether you walk for leisure, exercise or transport, check these Be Safe Be Seen tips to help you enjoy walking while being safe.

  • Using cell phones while walking is distracting. Find a safe place to stop and make a call or text.
  • Increasing your visibility helps motorists see you sooner, leaving more time to react.
  • Wear fluorescent colours (orange, yellow, red) during the day and when not possible, wear white.
  • Wear yellow or red reflective clothing during the dark hours and use reflective devices, like armbands and flashing lights.

Like to walk at night? Get your reflective gear from one of these local retailers.

Need more information to prepare your walk?

Additional information

Ottawa Public Library Branch walking maps

Alta Vista Public Library

Blackburn Hamlet Public Library

Carlingwood Public Library

Carp Public Library

Centennial Public Library

Cumberland Public Library

Elmvale Acres Public Library

Emerald Plaza Public Library

Greely Public Library

Greenboro District Library

Hazeldean Public Library

Main Public Library

Manotick Public Library

Metcalfe Public Library

Nepean Centrepointe Public Library

North Gloucester Public Library

North Gower Public Library

Orléans Public Library

Osgoode Public Library 

Richmond Public Library

Rideau Public Library

Rockcliffe Public Library

Rosemount Public Library

Ruth E. Dickinson Public Library

St-Laurent Public Library

Stittsville Public Library

Sunnyside Public Library

Vanier Public Library

Vernon Public Library

Local retailers

Retailer Address Telephone
Bushtukah 203 Richmond Road 613-792-1170
Bushtukah 5607 Hazeldean Road 613-831-3604
Cyco’s Sports 5 Hawthorne Avenue 613-567-8180
Foster’s Sports Centre 305 Bank Street 613-236-9611
Fresh Air Experience 1291 Wellington Street West  613-729-3002   
Full Cycle 401 St. Laurent Boulevard 613-741-2443
Kunstadt Sports 680 Bank Street 613-233-4820
Kunstadt Sports 1580 Bank Street 613-260-0696
Kunstadt Sports 462 Hazeldean Road 613-831-2059
Mister Safety Shoes 1526 Merivale Road 613-830-4782
Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) 366 Richmond Road 613-729-2700
Orleans Cycles 2404 St. Joseph Boulevard 613-837-1567
Rebec and Kroes  2639 Alta Vista Drive 613-521-3791
Running Room 901 Bank Street  613-233-5617
Running Room 160 Slater Street 613-233-5165
Running Room 1518 Merivale Road 613-228-3100
Running Room 418 Richmond Road 613-728-9081
Sportek 1020 Pleasant Park Road  613-737-5697
Sporting Life 125 Marché Way 613-216-6000
Sports Experts 50 Rideau Street  613-237-5760
Sports Experts 1200 St Laurent Blvd  613-741-3727
Sports Experts 100 Bayshore Drive 613-829-7680
Sports Experts 4338 Innes Road  613-590-0755
Tall Tree Cycles 1318 Wellington St., W.    613-725-2453
The Cyclery 1115 Bank Street West  613-695-9253

If you know of other retailers who sell reflective gear, get them added to the list by contacting our OPHIL line 613-580-6744.

For information on cycling tips, routes and safety visit the Start Cycling! page

Physical Activity for Older Adults

Woman excercisingOttawa Public Health assists seniors living in the community to maintain their health and independence by offering the following programs:

Senior Centres

The City operates four senior centres that offer fun programs in English, as well as drop-ins for residents age 55+:

Churchill Seniors Centre
345 Richmond Rd.

Heron Seniors Centre
1480 Heron Rd.

Kanata Seniors Centre
2500 Campeau Dr

Nepean Seniors Recreation Centre
1701 Woodroffe Ave.

Recreation Guide

The City offers a variety of fitness programs in facilities throughout Ottawa. Residents age 65+ receive a 10 per cent discount on all adult programs. The Recreation Guide is available here on our Web site, for pick up at your neighbourhood community centre, Client Service Centres and libraries.

Ottawa Public Health Information - Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (except statutory holidays)

TTY: 613-580-9656