Walking is essentially an activity that most of us are able to perform without loads of effort. There are of course always outliers but for a major portion of population, walking comes naturally as breathing. However just as there are many techniques and methods to work, and not every one of them is perfect, walking comes with the same condition.
With a little effort and technique change, you can convert your walking into a strenuous and healthy exercise. Bear in mind, even the normal regular walk is helpful however with a few tweaks in your walking routine, you can utilize the full potential of this easy to do exercise and become healthier and happier. The best bit is that if you manage your technique perfectly, you can tone your body. This will help you trim your waistline without much effort if you are looking at that and also help you work out on the muscles that you require working on giving you a perfect toned shape.
Not all physical activities need to be really complicated for them to give you a perfect body. With a few simple technique changes, tweaks, and long hours you can become a lean mean machine just by walking.
In order to turn your normal walk into a fitness stride you require a good posture and purposeful strong movements. Ideally, these are some of the steps that you can consider and changes in your technique for you to work on. These will take time to get used to and will also take time to show results. The results won’t be immediate and also if you feel some pain and discomfort consult your doctor and revert back to the easier routine of before.
- The head position: One of the key elements is the head position. Maintain a strong head position where your neck muscles don’t let the head droop and maintain a straight steady head posture. You may look with your eyes in any direction you wish to, but the head should point forward and slightly upwards, and not at the ground.
- The neck: Maintain a position between a fully relaxed neck and shoulder posture and a steady shoulder and neck posture. The balance is important; you can neither be too stiff, nor too relaxed.
- The arms: You need to be swinging your arms freely with a slight bend in your elbows if possible. A little pumping with your arms is okay to do just as the marching soldiers do. That helps you maintain momentum as well as exerts extra energy.
- The back and stomach: You need to maintain a walking posture where the stomach muscles are slightly tightened and the back should be completely straight. Arched back in any direction can lead to long term problems – ensure that you maintain a good back posture while walking.
- One smooth natural flow: Maintain a smooth walking rhythm where you flow through the body in one motion. Balance the stride length and maintain it, lift the knees so that your foot leaves the ground and walk with a rhythmic flow. Increase the speed to a level where you can maintain it for longer durations without feeling stressed out.
Photo credit: Hernan Piñera
/ CC BY-SA