Gearing Up for Christmas

Gearing Up for Christmas

The local Nordic walking group spent time last week using the cold, winter weather to put themselves through their paces at Evington Park.

Nordic walking was developed in Finland (hence the name) by cross country skiers as part of their summer training regime when there was little snow around. The aim is to use the two special poles to push you forward thereby increasing your pace, extending your stride a little and also increasing your endurance as the arms also work as well as the legs to aid your walking. Using the correct technique when Nordic walking, allows you to burn more calories and work more of your muscles than just simply walking.

Nordic Walking UK (one of the two main UK Nordic walking organisations) use a “gear” system to get Nordic walkers to progress their effort. Gear 1 encourages an opposite arm to leg movement with a slight push back on the poles. Gear 2 continues the backward movement of the arm and a strengthening in the push back gaining an increase in speed. It also encompasses technique to go up and down hills and inclines safely often incorporating a double poling movement. Gear 3 increases the movement of the arm behind the back and trunk rotation and this is where your body can really feel the “power of the poles” as you speed up and get a really good all over body workout.

Using the poles has many other benefits, such as improving posture and balance, providing stability on uneven or slippy ground, correcting gait patterns, aiding in going up and coming down steep inclines as well as reducing neck, lower back, leg and shoulder mobility problems for some people.

Being outdoors and exercising has been shown to have significant benefits for many people, and being part of a group helps to increase motivation to get outside whatever the weather. Ministry of Nordic Walks community group leads walks all year round and welcomes anyone who wants to have a go, whatever their fitness level, so why not think about gearing up for Christmas and coming along to our next free, taster session at Evington Park on December 13th 9:30 am to find out more. Poles will be provided. Places are limited so please book via or contact


Penny Fielden

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