Get into your stride

Woman & Home - - W&h Walking -

New to walk­ing? trip leader Clare Bon­nick shares her tips…

1 Walk­ing mainly uses your legs and bum mus­cles, but on rough ground you’ll need to en­gage your core for bal­ance, which is good for the brain too. 2 Pro­tect your knees by strength­en­ing your thigh mus­cles – do squats and lunges three times a week. us­ing poles when you walk also helps. 3 a proper warm-up and cool down isn’t nec­es­sary, but stretch­ing your legs after walk­ing can help pre­vent aches. 4 try tak­ing small steps when walk­ing up­hill, and avoid lean­ing too far for­wards or back­wards on the de­scent. Poles can also be help­ful to pro­pel you up­wards (plant them be­hind you to push your­self for­wards), and as “ex­tra legs” on the way down.

5 Nordic Walk­ing, which was in­vented by cross-coun­try skiers and uses taller poles, is a more in­tense form of walk­ing – it’s faster and works your arms and core as well as your legs, for a whole-body work­out.

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