One of the great things about Nordic walking is that you are using both your upper and lower body to move forward. Some estimates suggest that if you are doing it properly than about 30% of your propulsion is coming from your arms and shoulders and 70% from your lower body.
This has a number of effects. Firstly you are getting much more of a workout when you go on a Nordic walk compared with standard walking. Secondly, as a result of a proportion of your forward movements coming from your upper body, there is less stress on your hips legs and feet which generally helps us walk further than we would normally do. This is particularly so for people like me who have issues with their lower back and knees.
Having started this two years ago Nordic walking has become an essential part of my exercise regime but there has always been one little difficulty. As I move forward pushing my sticks quite I find that quite often the ground is slippy and you do not get a decent grip. Gravelly paths, extra smooth paving stones or wet grass are among the areas that I can find challenging.
A lot depends on the paws on your poles – the rubber bits at the bottom that make contact with the ground. I have just replaced mine with the new super knobbly ones pictured above. I have been out several times now and can say that these enable me to get a grip on almost all surfaces and has greatly added to my enjoyment of Nordic walking. I think I am walking faster and further. They are certainly worth trying.
Written by Mike Smithson of Political Betting