Country music star Dolly Parton reflects on career, family, and growing up in rural Tennessee in her Time to Walk episode.

Podcasts are great, but Apple has something else to complement your listening sessions.

Called Time to Walk the new feature is rolling out to the Apple Watch via the Fitness+ app (a Peloton competitor). The idea according to the PR is to “immerse” users “in a walk alongside influential and interesting people as they share thoughtful and meaningful stories, photos, and music.”

To use Time to Walk you need the following:

  • Apple Watch
  • Apple AirPods or other Bluetooth headphones
  • A subscription to Fitness+

Note that Apple offers a generous 90-day trial of Fitness+ so you can test this out at length before deciding if you want to dive into the monthly subscription and all the workout programming the platform offers.

“Walking is the most popular physical activity in the world, and one of the healthiest things we can do for our bodies. A walk can often be more than just exercise: It can help clear the mind, solve a problem, or welcome a new perspective,” said Jay Blahnik, Apple’s senior director of Fitness Technologies. “Even throughout this challenging period of time, one activity that has remained available to many is walking. With Time to Walk, we’re bringing weekly original content to Apple Watch in Fitness+ that includes some of the most diverse, fascinating, and celebrated guests offering inspiration and entertainment to help our users keep moving through the power of walking.”

Some examples of what you might expect when using Time to Walk:

Per Apple: Musician Shawn Mendes shares how a slower pace has helped him personally and creatively in his Time to Walk episode.
  • Country music star Dolly Parton reflecting on her career, family and growing up in rural Tennessee.
  • NBA player Draymond Green reflecting on the virtues of failure and tuning out criticism.
  • Emmy Award winner Uzo Aduba talks about lifelong relationships and keeping the faith.
  • Musician Shawn Mendes sharing how a slower pace has helped him personally and creatively.

Photos in Time to Walk episodes appear on the Apple Watch timed with the respective narrative.

Following each episode is a short playlist of songs that have given that particular guest motivation and inspiration.

Connectivity shouldn’t be an issue. Each Time to Walk episode is automatically downloaded to your Apple Watch. Starting it also automatically kicks off an Apple Workout, so you’ll get credit for your walk.

Stark Insider Take

Overall Apple adds something to the Fitness+ platform that can not only entertain its subscribers, but, more importantly, perhaps help those struggling with shelter-in-place and the various lockdown restrictions.

I know that professional athletes have discussed the importance of mental health during coronavirus. In the NHL, for example, quarantine rules can mean far less in-person contact with families and friends. Over time maintaining focus can be an issue. Several players — including Patrick Marleau of the San Jose Sharks — have mentioned these concerns, and how they try to look out for each other as a tricky season progresses.

Keeping a clear head and exercising regularly can certainly help all of us. I’m certainly not an expert, but I suspect things like Time to Walk and other types of podcasts can provide a certain amount of helpful and healthy escapism — not to mention inspiration and motivation.

Time to Walk is available in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the UK, and the US. After a three month trial, Fitness+ costs $9.99 USD per month or $79.99 per year.