Love to walk? Love to exercise? Have you tried Nordic Walking?
No? Then let me introduce you to a brilliant form of exercise which can give you a full-body workout, a whole host of health benefits and a great laugh at the same time.
If you’ve never heard of it, then it’s time to learn the secret of the world’s fastest-growing fitness activity.
Essentially, it’s a way of enhancing the way we already walk, making the exercise more effective. Nordic Walking uses poles to work out your upper body muscles, too, propelling you along so you work harder than usual as you walk.
I decided to try Nordic Walking when my lower back pain became a problem rather than an irritant, following high-impact exercise. And I’ve never looked back!
Nordic Walking classes are the ones I love to teach the most. It’s something anyone can do – I have people aged from 15 to 73 in my classes (sometimes in the same class) and everyone gets the workout they need. It’s even suitable for people with some mobility limitations, offering fantastic health benefits.
So what are these health benefits?
- A total body workout which tones and shapes every muscle of your body
- Weight loss. During Nordic Walking, you increase your heart rate on average 10-15% more than normal walking, which means you can burn up to 46% more calories!
- Harmony between your mind and body, as the exercise positively influences your mood and decreases stress
- Improved posture as your spine is lengthened and you carry your body weight more effectively
- Increased spinal and pelvis stability, as you engage your core muscles as you walk
- Better balance and coordination, thanks to the added stability of the two poles
- Increased oxygen intake, of between 20-40%
- Less stress on your joints, as you are spreading the load over four feet instead of two!
It is the only way I have found that you can get a full body workout while at the same time having a good old natter and a laugh along the way.
My mum, both my sisters, my husband and my daughter all enjoy Nordic Walking – and although I have yet to persuade my 15 year old son to have a go it’s only a matter of time before I wear him down with my enthusiasm for it.
In the winter, my classes were kitted out in waterproofs, fluorescent jackets, head torches and, of course, Nordic Poles and we all had a good giggle while we exercised – plus, we cheered up passers-by as we must have looked a little out of the ordinary!
One of my friends recently said: “Nordic Walking really can be a life-changing exercise!”
Which pretty much sums it up for me. So go on, get out there, find a Nordic Walking instructor in your area, and see what all the fuss is about!
You can find your nearest Nordic Walking instructor at either: