February 12, 1963

The President's Council, on Physical Fitness recommends hiking as an excellent activity for improving physical fitness and is pleased to note the current interest in that form of exercise. The Council advises those who have not been exercising regularly to begin moderately and to gradually increase the amount and intensity of the activity. This caution applies to any exercise program including walking and hiking.

Begin by walking a distance - and at a pace - that does not result in undue fatigue. Day by day increase the distance and the vigor. If you have not had a medical checkup recently, talk with your physician before engaging in a rigorous fitness program. Before undertaking long hikes, be sure you are wearing the proper shoes and socks.

A fifty mile hike is a fine challenge for the Marines and other persons who are in good physical condition. The Council is pleased to note the number of people who are sufficiently fit to cover that distance.

The Council also urges all citizens to participate regularly in a planned program of physical activity, consistent with their physical condition, as an essential aspect of a balanced life.