BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | How towns are redesigned as gyms

Stairs for cardio training. Wider footpaths instead of treadmills. To fight obesity, the towns we live in are being redesigned so we exercise without noticing.

Our forebears didn’t need advice to exercise for 20 minutes a day, five times a week. Physical activity was part of everyday life – walking to work, wringing mangles and promenading in the park on Sundays.

1950s housewife sets off to the shops in the Gorbals

Since the 1950s, life is increasingly sedentary. Car ownership has soared. Gadgets ranging from washing machines to remote controls take the effort out of household tasks. Free time often equates to screen time.