Nordic walking is pretty badass, actually

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I was skeptical about Nordic walking when I first heard about it. It felt like an attempt to commodify a ride, like, “You’re not really walk until you do with those expensive walking poles,” but after looking at the research behind it, I completely changed my mind.

Nordic walking is different from just ‘walking with poles’ and offers a number of advantages over normal walking. He burns more calories, exercises more muscle, puts less strain on the joints and provides extra stability. While it’s beneficial for just about everyone, it’s especially useful for seniors, people new to fitness, and anyone recovering from an injury.

What is Nordic walking?

Nordic walking originated in Finland, where cross-countrycross-country skiers have been walking with their poles for a long time in the warm seasons. In 1966, Finnish gym teacher Leena Jääskeläinen was the first to develop an organized pole vaulting routine. In the 1990s, the first commercially available Nordic walking poles were made, and the business has slowly grown ever since.

Nordic walking combines specialized equipment and specific technique, which results in a longer stride and the engagement of more muscle groups than walking with hiking/trekking poles or walking without poles at all. It’s cardio and strength training in one.

The advantages of Nordic walking compared to simple walking

Research indicates that Nordic walking is more beneficial than normal walking in almost every way. Nordic walking, if done correctly, combines the cardio benefits of brisk walking with muscle training for the legs, shoulders, arms and core, and even burns. more calories than normal walking. Because the impact of each step is distributed over the poles/arms, it reduces strain on the joints and provides increased stability. Research indicates that these effects are even present if Nordic walkers walk at a slower pace than regular walking.

Like most other forms of exercise, Nordic walking is correlated with a decrease in depression and anxiety, increased muscle strength, and improved endurance and flexibility, but one of the most interesting results of the scientific study of Nordic walking relates to perceived exertion. Objectively, the practice takes more energy than regular walking, but a study of obese women found that the subjects doesn’t perceive as being more tiring than walkingg, and were more likely to continue doing so compared to other forms of exercise. It also allows you to go outside – a big plus about training in a gym

What equipment do you need for Nordic walking?

In order to take full advantage of the benefits of Nordic walking, you will need suitable equipment. With a good pair of trainers (or hiking boots, depending on how tough you are going to be), a bottle of water and sunscreen, Nordic walking is all about poles.

Nordic walking poles are not the same as hiking poles, ski poles, or walking sticks. The main difference is the wrist strap. Nordic walking involves applying pressure to the pole through the strap/glove so that they are thicker and bigger, whereas trekking pole straps are usually simple loops designed not to make them to fall.

Nordic poles also come with different “legs”. If you are walking on soft ground you use a pointed one, but on solid ground Nordic poles have specially angled pads designed to work with the placement of the poles behind you as you walk.

Nordic poles come in two varieties: fixed length and adjustable. If you’re new, adjustable is probably the right choice, at least until you know how. long as they should be for you. They aren’t super expensive either: top rated poles here are $130but you can find one basic set for less than half.

Learn the technique of Nordic walking

It might sound a bit silly to worry about the technique of walking with poles, but it’s actually a different enough mode of locomotion that there’s a learning curve, and it takes some getting used to.

In a broad sense, Nordic walking on poles involves taking longer strides than normal walking, assisted by a “push” on the poles in your hands. Downhill, when there is no pressure on the hands, Nordic walkers release the poles and let them swing freely, they catch them uphill. So there are a few things to keep in mind when getting started.

There are two ways to learn to walk again: learn on your own or hire an instructor. If you go alone, there are a ton of useful nordic walking technique guides online, including videos on YouTube which are particularly useful as they provide a visual guide, as well.

If you are new to exercise, are out of shape, particularly uncoordinated, or are starting Nordic walking to recover from an injury, you should probably consult a trainer in your area to familiarize yourself. with the basics. If you can’t find a trainer, check meetup.com to find a local group in your area. I’m sure a good Nordic pro would be happy to show a newcomer the ropes. And the poles.

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