7th APRIL 2015 - Vol.XXXVIII No.018
Local News

Slowest walkers 'are in Manama'

BAHRAIN'S city dwellers are among the world's slowest walkers, according to a new international study.

The study, carried out in 32 countries, ranked Bahrain's pedestrians as the world's second slowest ahead of Malawi.

Researchers in 32 city centres worldwide found a busy street with a wide, flat and uncrowded pavement, free from obstacles where people could walk at their maximum speed.

In each city, 35 men and women were timed with stopwatches as they walked the 60-foot and the average results were tabulated.

The international study was commissioned by the British Council, which promotes cultural links in 109 countries, and headed by British psychologist Professor Richard Wiseman.

It followed the research of California State University's College of Science and Mathematics associate dean Professor Robert Levine, the American psychologist who conducted the original study in 1997. The research also showed that the world's walking pace had increased by 10 per cent compared to 1997, and that men were generally 25pc quicker on their feet than women.

Singapore topped the table, followed by Copenhagen, Madrid, Guangzhou and Dublin, who topped the 1997 list.

Bahrain was the slowest of the Arab countries on the list that included Egypt, Yemen, the UAE, Syria and Jordan.

"Pace around the world is 10pc faster than ever before," said Professor Wiseman.

"As people speed up in their lives they are not eating properly, exercising or seeing friends and family.

"All these things can lead to all kinds of diseases, especially heart attacks."

Professor Wiseman cited technology as a factor behind the increased pace of life. "We're just moving faster and getting back to people as quickly as we can - and that's minutes and not hours," he said. "That's driving us to think everything has to happen now."

The average walking times in seconds from each city studied were as follows:

1) Singapore (Singapore); 10.55

2) Copenhagen (Denmark); 10.82

3) Madrid (Spain); 10.89

4) Guangzhou (China): 10.94

5) Dublin (Ireland); 11.03

6) Curitiba (Brazil); 11.13

7) Berlin (Germany); 11.16

8) New York (US); 12.00

9) Utrecht (Netherlands); 12.04

10) Vienna (Austria); 12.06

11) Warsaw (Poland); 12.07

12) London (United Kingdom); 12.17

13) Zagreb (Croatia); 12.20

14) Prague (Czech Republic); 12.35

15) Wellington (New Zealand); 12.62

16) Paris (France); 12.65

17) Stockholm (Sweden); 12.75

18) Ljubljana (Slovenia); 12.76

19) Tokyo (Japan); 12.83

20) Ottawa (Canada); 13.72

21) Harare (Zimbabwe); 13.92

22) Sofia (Bulgaria); 13.96

23) Taipei (Taiwan): 14.00

24) Cairo (Egypt); 14.18

25) Sana (Yemen); 14.29

26) Bucharest (Romania); 14.36

27) Dubai (United Arab Emirates); 14.64

28) Damascus (Syria); 14.94

29) Amman (Jordan); 15.95

30) Bern (Switzerland); 17.37

31) Manama (Bahrain); 17.69

32) Blantyre (Malawi); 31.60

click on image to view the digital edition