Thursday 18 February 2016

Nordic Walking - What's That?

As I have been going on a bit about wanting to set up Nordic walking in the community to follow on from my Walking for Health group, I thought I ought to actually say what Nordic walking is as some of  my readers have asked questions.

Nordic walking is a full body exercise, devised by a lady in Finland during the 1960's, which derived from their cross-country skiers' summer fitness regime.
image courtesy of

Two poles are used to push backwards and propel you forward as you walk which also helps to reduce the pressure on joints particularly the knees.  This often makes it a very suitable keep fit activity for older people as well as those recovering from illnesses.  According to the National Health Service in the UK "regular Nordic walking can lower your risk of chronic illness, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, asthma, stroke and some cancers."

Due to the use of the poles, you burn up to 40% more calories than normal walking and it is an ideal way to lose weight and build fitness for all levels and ages.  As it is also a social activity, it benefits mental health and well-being too!

I love this infographic I found :)

Which all adds up to why I enjoy it on a personal level but it can be expensive to have qualified instruction (I have seen sessions costing £15-40 per hour).  I am lucky to be able to walk with a group on a bi-weekly session if I want for only £4 but this is only offered at a particular time on a particular day and trying to book personal group sessions is limited as there are very few instructors available where I live.  Therefore my goal is to be able to offer weekly walks for free in my community which I think would be very beneficial on health and social grounds to quite a few groups including the elderly. This is why I am now currently looking for funding for equipment as this comes expensive for the proper poles especially when I'll need at least 12 sets of poles to be able to lead groups of 8-10 (as fixed pole heights are supposed to be better than adjustable).  I am very hopeful that I should be able to get this to coincide with the completion of my instructor training by the end of March so that I could begin teaching groups in April and be all set for May when World Nordic Walking Day takes place!  Wish me luck :)


  1. Thank you for educating me on Nordic Walking!!

    1. Hi Paula :) Not sure if Nordic Walking has made it to the States yet or not? It might just be a more European thing!!