Nordic walking: how to walk,benefits, contraindications

Update: October 2018

Nordic Walking (Nordic Walking, Finnish, Nordic
walking) – a popular form of physical activity based on
certain technique of walking with the use of special sticks, externally
resembling ski. The technique has gained worldwide popularity with
late 90s. The principle of movement is based on summer exercises.

The story of the appearance of the Scandinavian walk

Nordic walking appeared a long time ago. More pilgrims
used similar supports, overcoming rough terrain. AT
methods of physical therapy stick used for a long time to
improving health and rehabilitation after illness.

Close to the modern version of Nordic Walking for the first time walking
appeared in 1940 in Finland and was used by professional
skiers to keep fit outside workouts.

The primacy of the method of walking with sticks as an independent
amateur sport challenged by Mauri Rapo (his method is described
in the article “Hiihdon lajiosa” in 1979) and Mark Kantan (similar to
article “Sauvakävely” in 1997). However, the name was
patented by Mark Kantan – it was he who wrote and published
first handbook on Nordic Walking.

AT конце 90х техника ходьбы трансформировалась в самостоятельный
sport and received popularization around the world.

AT Россию же необычный вид спорта пришел относительно недавно, но
already become an effective alternative to running. The fact is that the movements
involve almost all muscle groups (up to 90%, while
normal walking is not more than 70%), which leads to the strengthening of the body in
whole, spine and joints in particular. Moreover, active
work the muscles of the back and upper shoulder girdle, which is normal
walks do not occur. Reliance on inventory reduces
the load on the hip and knee joints, as well as on the foot.

The benefits of Nordic walking are proven and undeniable, meanwhile,
the technique has its limitations associated with dosing and
load intensity in various diseases, therefore, requires
consultation with a doctor before the start of classes


There are a lot of indications for this type of amateur sport.
For example, in Germany Nordic walking is obligatory.
element of all rehabilitation programs after operative
interventions on the musculoskeletal system. German patients
clinics that have undergone hip arthroplasty, already
a month after the operation, they return to their normal pace of life
thanks to walking with sticks.

The highest efficiency is observed in the following conditions:

  • excess body weight;
  • lung pathology of the respiratory system;
  • disorders of the musculoskeletal system: osteochondrosis, scoliosis
    in adults and children, and also used as a preventive
  • vascular and heart diseases, as well as prevention
    hypertension, atherosclerosis;
  • depression, neurosis;
  • Parkinson’s disease;
  • sleep disorders;
  • vegetative vascular dystonia;
  • recovery period after operations.

On the load walking refers to cardio, i.e., first
queue strengthens the heart muscle, which means it requires approval from
hand doctor for diseases of the lungs and cardiovascular system. The technique does not have
age indications and is especially popular among people of retirement

Features of the choice of equipment and equipment for training

In order to maximize the effectiveness of classes

  • comfortable sportswear for the weather;
  • hiking shoes or special running shoes;
  • sticks.

For winter activities suitable clothes that are used for
ski walks, for example, thin thermal underwear that will warm in
severe frost, and winter ski overalls. In the summer can be worn as
tracksuit and comfortable t-shirts, shorts. Concerning
shoes – sneakers should be well and firmly fix the area of ​​the foot,
have a tight but bending sole. You should also wear two pairs.
cotton socks so as not to rub calluses.

Selection of sticks

The first special sticks were produced by Exel Oyj in 1997.
year The length of the sticks is chosen individually, by multiplying the growth
per person by a special factor of 0.7. ATсе монолитные палки для
Nordic walking have standard sizes with a difference of 5 cm.
If the resulting number is intermediate, the result is
round depending on the physical fitness of a person:

  • shorter length is preferred for beginners as well as people with
    contraindications to significant loads on the spine;
  • longer sticks have an additional strain on the back and
    hands, therefore suitable for trained athletes.

Also on sale are special telescopic sticks that
allows them to be used by all family members, and especially
children – inventory will grow with them. The best material is
carbon Somewhat cheaper will be aluminum products.

Inventory is expensive – a set of sticks costs from 3,000 rubles,
therefore, they should be bought in accordance with growth and physical
opportunities, and treat them carefully, do not transmit the third

The benefits of Nordic walking

Doctors have long proven the fact that walking is much
healthier and safer for the body than running and strong
physical exercise. Moving at the same quiet pace.
It has a positive effect on both health and emotional

What give walking:

  • enrichment of blood and internal organs with oxygen;
  • strengthening vessels and heart muscle;
  • acceleration of metabolic processes;
  • improve digestion;
  • activation of toxic substances;
  • lowering cholesterol;
  • immunity strengthening;
  • improved muscle tone;
  • fat burning;
  • improving balance and coordination;
  • rehabilitation of the joints and spine;
  • great mood and positive.

The most important thing is the regularity of classes, which are skipped.
permissible only for health reasons.


Like any sport, before the start of classes should be
warm-up – swinging arms and legs, flexion-extension of the body, lifting
on tiptoes for 2-3 seconds, neat jumps from one foot to the other and on
both legs. You can use special exercises with sticks:
tilts left and right with arms raised holding a stick
bends forward with emphasis on sticks, etc.

So, how to walk Scandinavian walking:

  • The main element of the lesson is a step.
  • The main rule: the left hand with a stick is the right foot (heel), and
    on the contrary: the right hand is the left leg, i.e. should turn out
  • The stick is on the side near the foot, slightly angled.
  • When touching the ground with a stick, you should take a step: put your foot on
    heel, then roll to toe. But to put the legs at once on the whole
    the surface of the foot does not follow.
  • The legs during the walk should be slightly bent at the knees.
  • Hands while moving a little bend in the elbows and move them
    up and down when pushing away from the surface. The hand rises under
    углом 450 в верхнем положении, а «нижняя» же рука
    moves back to the pelvic level.
  • It is impossible to lean on sticks with considerable effort! It creates
    additional stress on the musculoskeletal system.

How to hold stick

In fact, they themselves hold on their hands thanks to a special, very
durable and reliable hinges. The hinges look like glove bells
and with the help of wide bands cover the bases of the thumbs,
which prevents incorrect movements of the brush. Keep inventory need
freely, without tension of hands, in parallel one one. ATо время
bridging hard surfaces for ease on sticks
rubber tips, soft areas easier to pass, just
pushing off with a thorn.

So, before class, you need to pass a hand through the loop, adjust
diameter with a fastener and fasten the loop so that the area
wrists were not pinched. Thus, the sticks will not fall out of

Contraindications and disadvantages of the technique

  • Acute diseases and exacerbations of chronic pathologies;
  • Serious joint diseases, osteoporosis;
  • Severe angina;
  • Hypo-and hypertension severe;
  • Primary recovery period after surgery (when
    bed rest is shown).

The disadvantages of this sport are some dependence
from weather conditions. You can walk throughout the year,
but in reality, heavy rain, blizzard or snowfall is much
impede movement and may adversely affect
health condition. Walking in the gym is difficult, and
skipping classes is not recommended.

How to walk for maximum efficiency

It is recommended to find a companion or go with the whole family –
It motivates, improves efficiency and overall mood.
There are entire schools and clubs of people who admire the Scandinavian
walking that make daily walks.

  • Meals should be an hour and a half before class.
  • You need to go at a fast pace, but do not go on a run. stroll
    should be comfortable, not accompanied by pain in the abdomen, shortness of breath and
    rapid breathing.
  • Increase the load – only gradually.
  • ATо время ходьбы нельзя опускать голову вниз, плечи должны быть
    relaxed and freely lowered, and posture – smooth. Need to
    try to think positive and smile.
  • Walking is best organized in environmentally friendly
    places where there is a lot of vegetation and no transport. Optimal
    option – hilly paths of parks, squares.
  • The duration of one lesson is at least 40 minutes. how many
    walk as much as possible? It depends on fitness, but exceed
    60-90 minutes is definitely not worth it.
  • ATо время прогулки можно пить чистую воду небольшими
  • After the walk you should do a couple of leisurely exercises on
    stretching or just a few deep breaths.

Nordic Walking and Weight Loss – how it works

Proper Nordic walking, conducted regularly, leads
to the gradual loss of extra pounds. When walking on average or
fast paced burns about 10 calories in 1 minute. Also
almost all muscles are pumped. ATо время ходьбы можно
�”Work” on problem areas. So, if you walk and hold
abdominal muscles are moderately retracted, you can get rid of fat
deposits in this zone. Overcoming rough terrain with
rises up perfectly pumps up the muscles of the legs. If you pull up
buttocks and trying to mentally hold a coin between them – they
will get a beautiful shape.

Typical mistakes

Nordic Nordic walking is not easy for everyone, some
же не видят никаких положительных изменений в health condition.
This may be due to some errors:

  • Using homemade sticks or inventory from other species
  • Incorrect retention of sticks (cross them behind your back);
  • Turning the body while raising the arm to perform
    repulsive movement;
  • Using the power of the brush, not the elbow during
  • Use uncomfortable shoes.

Nordic Walking is a pleasant sport available for everyone.
which has a positive effect on health, mood and

Автор: врач-гигиенист, эпидемиолог

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