Wandern - gesund fürs Herz

Hiking – healthy for the heart

Together with partners, Salzburg Research has remapped hiking trails with a focus on heart health and developed a method for hikers to independently determine their individual heart fitness with commercially available fitness trackers and, based on this, to walk hiking trails safely and consciously. The results and offers are also transferable to other regions.

Exercise is healthy. But when hiking in the mountains, overexertion can quickly become a danger. Knowing one’s own physical endurance capacity is therefore of great importance. In the INTERREG project “Connect2Move”, Salzburg Research and its partners have developed concepts for conscious and safe movement in the Alps. They are based on scientific user surveys and trend analyses and serve both to increase year-round gentle health tourism and to promote the individual mountain fitness skills of tourists and locals.

Determine your mountain fitness independently

Hiking trails in Werfenweng in Salzburger Land and in Aschau in Chiemgau have been digitally mapped with new health information to make them healthier for the heart. On a 1 km long cardio-trekking test trail, hikers can now independently determine their individual physical endurance capacity directly on site with the help of commercially available fitness trackers.

This required know-how from the fields of sports and data science: In numerous test hikes with mobile spirometry devices for performance diagnostics, data was collected with more than 200 test persons. From this data, the data experts at Salzburg Research developed a model to validly derive the individual exercise intensity, even with commercially available fitness trackers such as chest straps or smartwatches.

The results of the test hike are then used to recommend suitable hikes for the respective mountain fitness: the physical load for each section of the route is calculated on the selected heart paths and colour-coded on a digital hiking map according to the traffic light system.


The results are transferable to other regions

The developed concepts from the research project are transferable to other regions. A manual offers concrete recommendations and instructions for the implementation of a test trail with digital BergFit test and the integration into tourist offers.

Hiking for the Heart: Handbook

The manual from the project “Connect2Move – Hiking for the Heart” (funded by the INTERREG Bavaria-Austria programme), which was prepared under the leadership of Salzburg Research, offers concrete recommendations and instructions for the implementation of a 1km cardio-trekking test trail with a digital BergFit test and how it can be integrated into new regional tourism offers.

To the digital publication in German: Handbuch

Connect2Move was funded by the INTERREG Bavaria-Austria programme.

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