Finally, the weather seems to be picking up, and although the Easter holidays were a bit of a wash-out, we have two more Bank Holidays to look forward to in May, so fingers crossed we might be able to get out and about a bit more!
Everyone knows that walking is good for you, but it is hard to be motivated when it is pouring with rain or icy blasts are blowing from Siberia. A lot has been made of the 10,000 steps target we should all apparently be aiming for – but as Dr Michael Mosley demonstrated in a recent BBC documentary, greater health benefits can be achieved by three 10 minute walks a day, as long as the pace is brisk enough. See a summary of the documentary here
The Active 10 App is a great way to log your brisk walking minutes and help you reach a weekly target of 150 minutes activity, as recommended by the NHS
May just so happens to be National Walking Month. This is organised by a charity called Living Streets and its aim is to get more people out of their cars and back to walking. Of course, walking more is not only better for your own health, but if you can walk instead of taking the car you are improving the health of your community. Visit the Living Streets website for more information about events and local groups.
Although walking is good for you, it can be a struggle for some. If you experience discomfort when you walk, or have concerns about your balance, talk to one of our Podiatrists. We can advise on footwear, check that your feet are functioning properly and check for muscle imbalances. As Juliann described in her previous Pilates blog, our ability to dorsiflex the foot (bring the toes up towards the shin) diminishes with age as the muscles in front of our shins get weaker. This results in us taking shorter strides, which in turn means the gluteal muscles (the ones in your bottom) get weaker, which prevents us from striding out, and so the vicious circle continues.
Simple exercises can bring tone back into the muscles which will making walking more efficient and effective. If you would like to receive an exercise programme, drop us a line at email@example.com and details will be emailed to you.