Brisk walking is a great way exercise due to its numerous health benefits. However, as with any other form of rigorous exercise, you need to protect your muscles and joints with a proper warm-up.
Why Warm Up for Brisk Walking?
Warming-up helps reduce the risk of injury but also improves your athletic performance. It can also help to reduce stress on your heart and other muscles.
How To Warm Up?
In general, the first focus of your warm-up exercises should target large muscle groups, such as your hamstrings.
Begin by doing the activity and movement patterns of your chosen exercise, but at a low, slow pace that gradually increases in speed and intensity. This is called a dynamic warmup. A warmup may produce mild sweating but generally won’t leave you fatigued.
To warm up for a brisk walk, walk at a normal pace for 5 to 10 minutes.
Here are 5 warm-up tips we recommend before ploughing into your brisk walking routine. They target specific muscles and movements central to walking.
All are done standing up or resting one hand on something for balance if needed.
We recommend spending 30 seconds on each move, and the whole routine will take under three minutes.
1. Toe Points
Stand on one leg and lift the other foot off the floor. Gently point your toe and hold for a few seconds. Next flex your foot pointing your toes up.
Do these five or ten times on each foot.
2. Ankle Circles
While standing on one leg lift the other foot off the floor. Gently point your toe and rotate your ankle. Slowly flex that ankle through its full range of motion, making circles with the toes. Do about ten circles in each direction, then switch feet and repeat.
This exercise can be performed while standing, sitting, or lying on your back with your leg raised.
3. Pelvic Loops
Put your hands on your hips with your knees gently bent and feet shoulder-width apart. Keep your body upright and make 10 slow, continuous circles with your hips, pushing them gently forward, to the left, back, and to the right. Then reverse directions and repeat.
4. Leg Swings
Stand on one leg. Swing the other loosely from the hip, front to back. Use a relaxed motion like the swinging of a pendulum. Your foot should swing no higher than a foot off the ground.
Do 15 to 20 swings with each leg.
5. Arm Circles
Hold your arms straight out to your side parallel to the ground. Make 10 small circles going backwards, gradually getting larger and larger, using the entire arm.
Shake your arms out and do the same thing in the forward direction, repeating 10 forward circles.
Finding time for regular aerobic workouts, warming up, as well as cooling down, should be part of your regular brisk walking routine. With a little creativity, and our tips you can probably fit it in.
Walking to and from the gym can be your warmup and cool-down activity too.
And don’t forget to bring your smartphone to count your steps that will be rewarded by Sweatcoin.