Nordic pole walking began in Finland in 1997 and involves walking with the assistance of poles, which provides the advantage of actively engaging the upper body and upper extremities.
It provides health and wellness benefits to individuals of all fitness levels and can be done almost anywhere, at any time of the year. Individuals with joint problems especially benefit from Nordic pole walking because the poles help to distribute weight evenly, which helps to lessen the load on the joints of the body, including the back, hips, knees, and ankles.
Much of the popularity of this activity may be due to the increased energy expenditure compared to conventional walking. Research has shown that conventional walking uses less than 50% of the major muscles of the body compared to over 90% with pole walking. Plus, pole walking increases your heart and cardiovascular rate by 20% and your calorie burn by 46%, without any additional effort. Research has shown that 30 minutes of Nordic pole walking is equivalent to 50 minutes of conventional walking, so if you’re limited for time, adding Nordic poles to your daily walks can be an easy solution. In addition to the physical benefits of Nordic pole walking, engaging in this activity increases the production of “feel good” hormones, which helps with the management of stress and other mental health conditions.
If you want to get started with Nordic pole walking we offer free introductory classes in the spring. we also offer one on one sessions for a fee. Contact our office (403-328-7325) for more information.