Besides being an excellent all-around exercise for everyone, Nordic walking has helped many people regain at least some of their fitness, lost due to illness, accidents, or simple physical degeneration, due to years of sedentary living and neglect.
U.S. National Institutes of Health is conducting a study, entitled “Nordic Walking and Chronic Low Back Pain”. I’m confident that the results will show considerable benefits of Nordic walking in the case of lower back ailments.
There is a case of a man, who after suffering severe back problems for several years, considered himself at only 40-years of age to be a nearly total basket case. He barely managed to hobble around the house and just getting to and from his car was an ordeal.
Fortunately, a well-meaning and well-informed friend convinced him to make the effort and to gradually try to walk with poles. The results were nothing short of amazing!
Being able to transfer a considerable share of weight and of effort from his already weakened and atrophied (by lack of activity) legs helped him to stroll at a respectable pace. The first try netted one block of walking. Within a month our friend was regularly covering a mile, or even more.
Now over a year after starting Nordic walking, the back problems (which were incorrectly diagnosed earlier as degenerative disc disease) practically went away. As it turns out, the cause of the debilitating back pain was mainly muscle atrophy and lack of proper stretching.
Another great example is provided by Trevor Riches, who was able to lower his blood pressure, by a whopping 38 points within only two weeks! I doubt very much if very many others will be able to progress as fast as Trevor did, but lets hear his story (which he put up earlier on this website):
I needed to lose weight and, after some research, decided that Nordic Walking would be the best way for me to exercise. What appealed to me was the low impact, fun way in which I could achieve a good workout for my whole body and not just my legs.
I surfed the net and discovered the Nordic Walking US website. The site is full of useful information and seemed to be a friendly place to be. I liked the personable way in which the site was constructed, obviously by people who truly cared about this sport and wanted to share it with the world.
I ordered a pair of Swix Nordic Poles model CT-2 with the Twist&Go tips. These poles are lightweight with the added plus that the tips can be flipped around to enable walking on hard surfaces such as asphalt or soft surfaces such as trail or grass etc.
The poles arrived and I started to walk April 1st. 2006. My weight at that time was 127 kilos, blood pressure 175/99. That first day I walked .75 mile in 46 minutes. Today, April 15th. My weight is 124.4 kilos, blood pressure 137/79 and I walked 1 mile in 30 minutes.
Additionally I am out in nature breathing FRESH air working my whole body in a low impact manner. I can Nordic Walk anywhere. I thought that I would have a hard time excercising everyday but I truly look forward to walking every morning.
The bonus with Nordic Walking is that the poles lessen the strain on my back and knees, something I have had problems with for years. My back and knees actually feel better for the workout!
I am a believer in Nordic Walking – it works! Marek at Nordic Walking US has been superb in his support with a couple of problems I had often replying to my e mails within an hour or less.
I am not given to write these sort of “blogs”, however,I really want people to know that this is a great way to exercise for those of us that have been inactive for too long!
Although we support and encourage everyone to exercise and to achieve and even surpass their fitness goals, Nordic Walking US cannot be held responsible for any mishaps. Please consult with your health professional, whether you can safely engage in strenuous activities.