MS Society introduces the 1 Km walk

MS Society introduces the 1 Km walk

Great news from the MS Society

Sport is an area of society in which ableism is seen only too often. Finally the society is embracing people with progressive MS and mobility issues in a positive way. Eventually the MS Society introduces the 1 Km walk

It is only within the last ten to fifteen years that Western society recognises athletes with disabilities. Look at the success of the Rio Paralympic games. Yes it’s fantastic that we support these people but almost all of them have a fixed disability.

“Aha” I hear you saying, “Aren’t people with MS often sponsored to run in a marathon?”

“Yes there are lots of people with MS who can run a marathon but you almost never see a world champion who has multiple sclerosis”.

An exception is Stephanie Millward who has MS and won 5 medals at the Rio Paralympics in 2016.

MS Society sponsored walk

For many years the MS Society has organised a sponsored walk in London. The walk could be one of three distances 5 Km, 10 Km or 20 Km It is not a competitive event, you can walk it stroll it or use your mobility scooter.

Twenty years ago I could have easily walked 20 Km, then it was only a long dog walk. Now I can just about manage to walk 1 Km or 1000 metres using my rollator.

The MS Society encourages us all to take exercise. I really wanted to take part in the 2017 walk last year, 2017 but a 5 km walk was going to be 4 km too far. Eventually I decided to do the shortest distance on my mobility scooter. Sadly for me there was now no sense of achievement.


Last year I wrote an article about this problem, my anger and frustration were obvious. It was posted on my website and on the Barts MS Blogsite. I did this to remove my sense of ill feeling at the ableism of the MS Society.Was this just ignorance or a lack of understanding by them?

MS Society introduces the 1 Km walk

Recently I received an email from the MS Society stating that on Sunday 23 September this year a walk of 1 km has been added to the sponsored walk event – yeah a BIG RESULT.

It is fair to add that I did speak to Michelle Mitchell when she was chief executive of the MS Society on this issue. Did this help?

Walking 1000 metres

This is a win-win result for the MS Society and people with SPMS who have mobility problems. Training for and undertaking a walk of 1 km will be hard work for some people, trust me. Upon completion of other 1 Km walks I feel a genuine sense of achievement. I hope enough people walk this distance so the MS Society includes the 1 km walk next year and the year after and the year after that.

Unfortunately I’m going to be in Australia visiting my son so I am unable to do the walk this year. None the less I hope people will now walk the 1 Km in Battersea Park. It really is well worth doing.

Associated article

Musmate a walking aid for foot drop    Musmate





July 2018


5 responses to “MS Society introduces the 1 Km walk”

  1. You are coming to Australia!
    Are you planning to visit Melbourne?
    Would you be interested in meeting?

    • Hello David,

      Yes we are spending a very short time in Melbourne. Visiting some friends. Not too sure of the timetable. Suggest you email your address to me and phone number and take things forward from there. No promises

  2. It’s good to hear about the 1km walk – not that I can walk at all. As for MS athletes, when I was an equestrian journalist, I interviewed a rider with MS that won quite a few gold medals. The horse is a key part of the team, of course, but the rider still needs to use her legs, hands, balance etc.

  3. Joanne says:

    Maybe just as well you are not doing the walk in case your PIP assessor is hiding in a tree watching?!
    Well done for the introduction of a more inclusive distance!

    • Hello Joanne,

      You have hit the nail on the head. How do you prove to DWP that you are disabled and then turn round and walk 1 K in order to maintain a decent quality of life. I agree with my doctor who said that the PIP system is grossly wrong and morally indefensible

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