Plogging: a way to join physical activities to ecological practices!

Plogging: a way to join physical activities to ecological practices!

Plogging is an activity not too famous worldwide. You can practice it when you are jogging. While getting better because of your physical activities you are making your city cleaner. Join it! 

 What does "plogging" exactly mean?

A combination of jogging and plocka upp, Swedish for “to pick up,” plogging entails jogging and quickly stopping to pick up trash while you go walking.

Plogging has a great positive effect on the environment, as well as to the jogger's health. By bending, lifting, and straightening regularly additional muscle groups are trained.

It all started when a Swedish climber, called Erik Ahlström, also a runner, observed that during his running activities, there was a lot of garbage on the streets and on the sidewalks. 

In other words, Ahlström figured out a way to do both collecting trash and do some exercise.

Plogging turned out to be an activity that you are doing some sort of exercise while helping clean up litter.

Jo Stevens, who manages in Sweden, famous JogScotland, is also in full support of the new trend. He points:

“For people who jog regularly, it’s great to introduce a bit of variety into your sessions. This looks like a good way of doing something different, which benefits the community. Quite a few joggers already take it on themselves to pick up litter when they see it in their running spots. Having a whole group of joggers doing this regularly could make a real difference to parks, paths, and pavements,”.

As in all physical activity, plogging, in order to be successful, should be well planned, that is, before its beginning, a script should be well defined, in addition to its periodicity.

Count on the support of the local government or private companies, it can be a good idea for the activity to have a lasting effect.

Gathering some of your friends willing to work together increases everyone's motivation. For example, once a week, everyone gathers to collect garbage from a specific location while practicing their favorite physical activity.

After plogging, nothing more rewarding than a photo for posterity and to spread the example!

Plogging has been inserted into the projects, "zero-waste cities" and "sponge cities" (topics already posted on the Blog).

Tips for organizing plogging with guaranteed success:


  • Most ploggers bring gloves and a trash bag, and as they see litter while jogging, they simply pick it up. Depending on the place you will clean up, bring a mask, just in case. 
  • Because trash may be heavy or even humid, you can bring a fabric-made bag, if needed.
  • Take with you a rope to help you to carry the garbage. Tie it to your waist when it is full or even carry it like a backpack. 


  • Plot your itinerary in advance, both round trip. Identify the items from the trash, pick up on the exit, and do the same when on the way back. Thus, it will counterbalance the weight of the bag.
  • While jogging, switch the trash bag from hand to hand so as not to force both arms. 
  • Advertise your plogging agenda, via city hall or via a private company or whoever wants to sponsor your plogging activity. The idea is to advertise private or public companies who are interested to do so. 
  • Establish rules for your plogging. Plan everything right, like the daily or weekly itineraries.
  • Invite your friends to join you. Ask them to do the same. The more people join the movement, the better for everyone!

Add - ons

  • Along with your cell phone, do not forget the headset (it's an obvious hint, but it worth it to be repeated).
  • Download a specific app to give you logistical support, such as the following locations, weather and activity time, as well as mileage to complete the apparatus. The type of terrain, it is also important to be known upfront. Here's a good tip: the "MapMyRun" app has it all. 
  • Be dressed in a way that you can move your body with freedom. Light clothing, light t-shirt, and hiking shoes are the ideals. 

Use the hashtag #plogging to find a community of ploggers near you!

Tips from an expert:

A cardiologist explains that plogging can help strengthen the muscle of the lower limbs and abdomen and gives 5 more important tips:

  1. The proper way to squat when collecting the garbage is to contract the lower limbs and abdomen.
  2. To avoid dizziness, during collection, the ideal is to look forward instead of looking down.
  3. It is important not to be distracted by conversations during plogging in order not to overheat the body or wasting energy.
  4. Always be well hydrated and fed.
  5. When you're done, be sure to post your plogging day on your social media in order to spread your good example as well as to motivate other people to do do the same! 
By Marco Veado - THINK GREEN
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