Nordic Walking – the potential for Balance Performance clients

nordic walking and the potential for our clients – by Balance Physiotherapist Sophie Bloor

Nordic walking is a form of fitness walking using specially designed poles. It is a total body version of walking as force is applied through the poles with each stride, engaging the more of the upper body and trunk musculature than regular walking.

At Balance, we see the potential for some our patients to get involved with Nordic Walking as part of their rehabilitation. Sometimes we find that with clients who use crutches/ a crutch/ a stick for support long term, the natural movement patterns of their trunk and upper body are inhibited by their aid, limiting balance capabilities which creates an additional set of problems to overcome. We have transitioned clients onto Nordic Poles with much success with regards to pain and function.

Martin Christie, founder of Nordic Walking UK came to Balance Performance Physiotherapy in November to give the staff an overview of Nordic Walking, the benefits and how it can be used with rehabilitation. We all got involved with trying out the technique and using the Nordic Poles and Urban Poles. We also had the pleasure of meeting one of south London’s local instructors, Carolyn Garritt.

  • We are offering a Nordic Walking package which consists of:
  • 1 pair of telescopic Nordic Walking Poles
  • 30 minutes 1:1 bespoke tuition with one of our physiotherapists
  • At a cost of £90, this is ideal as an adjunct to rehabilitation, a kickstarter to an outdoors fitness regime, or as a gift to loved one.

Poles can be bought on their own at the Balance Performance shop in Clapham North for £35.

Nordic Walking claims a number of additional benefits over normal walking such as increased oxygen uptake and calorie expenditure, improved posture and gait, improved functional capacity in older people and ability to enhance mood. It may also be helpful in terms of supporting weight loss, and promoting back and heart health. In addition, the technique can enable an individual to work towards more natural and fluid movement, and allows for steady progression through different environmental terrains which helps to build up balance and stamina. Finally, there can be many social benefits associated with being part of a Nordic Walking group including distraction from thinking about “how” to walk correctly, restoring some normality to life, discovering that others may well have experienced similar health issues, and being able to participate in a normal activity with friends and family.

For more information on Nordic walking nearby, please visit . Whether it is a taster class, a wellbeing walk or a ski fit class, there really is something for everyone.