Walking for health
We all know very well that physical activity has a positive impact on health. However, we are not all aware that walking can have such a positive impact on our well-being. Just two 10-minute walks a day can significantly improve one’s health in terms of: better sleep, feelings of relaxation, reduced risk of health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, some types of cancer, depression, Alzheimer’s. Even a daily walk to the bus stop can reduce your chances of contracting one of these diseases. Also, walking:
- improves memory,
- lowers blood pressure,
- reduces the effects of genes responsible for weight gain, but also burns fat on its own,
- reduces the desire to snack on something sweet,
- lowers the risk of breast cancer by 14%, even among women at increased risk of the disease,
- reduces joint pain and does our joints good, lessening the chances of developing arthritis,
- improves immunity, reduces the chance of catching a cold or flu, and if you do get sick, increases the chances of a shorter period of illness with fewer symptoms,
- strengthens bones, improves balance and motor skills,
- strengthens muscle power and endurance.
A 2007 study on a group of physically inactive women found that even 75 minutes per week significantly improved fitness compared to a group that did no exercise. Walking requires no special preparation or equipment. You can walk in your own time, at your own pace and the vast majority of people are predisposed to walk. It would seem that walking is not exercise, although in fact when we walk we are doing the work of carrying the entire weight of our body. Walking is a great way to start any form of activity in your life. For most people, the amount of energy needed to walk one kilometre is the same as the amount of energy needed to run one kilometre – it just takes longer. Therefore, if you are not predisposed to running, you can simply walk. The best warm-up before walking is… to walk at a slow pace. Walking slowly will give your muscles a chance to warm up.
Another positive aspect of walking is a completely different perspective on the city. Walking allows us to slow down, breathe and observe city life. Walking gives us time to think things through, calm our nerves, and can even become a kind of daily meditation. After all – if you are concerned about the state of the environment – there is no greener way to get around than walking.
Source: „Walking benefits”