With each step, members of the Aboriginal Yanma Walking Group are enjoying friendship and fresh air as they explore the beautiful bushland of the Macarthur region and Southern Highlands.
About 20 members meet every Tuesday during school terms to trek scenic areas including Fitzroy Falls, Picton Botanical Gardens, Avon Dam at Bargo and Lake Alexander before preparing and enjoying lunch together.
Group coordinator and Health Promotion Officer, South Western Sydney Local Health District, Wendy Roberts, said members gained physical fitness and mental health benefits from the regular walks.
"It is wonderful to see the friendships and social networks form as members get to know each other,'' Ms Roberts said.
"We also measure our steps which gives us motivation and we all encourage and support each other to face longer or more vigorous walks.
"Our members have also gained new skills in managing their health and have a much stronger connection with their community.''
Participants said they enjoyed the "fresh air, walking and getting out of the house" and the "yarns and stories'' they heard while walking.
The name of the group - Yanma - means 'go walk' in the traditional Dharawal language.
For more information phone Wendy Roberts on 0418 416 230 or 46218745 or you can drop by before 9am on Tuesday at Wollondilly Health Centre, 15 Harper Close, Tahmoor.