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The latest news on this change — carefully culled from the world wide web by our change agents. They do the surfing, so you don't have to!

Grab Your Poles and Go

Learning something new can be a bit awkward sometimes. Changing up your workout routine is no different—especially when you add new equipment, like poles, to the equation. But research shows that Nordic walking, a form of fitness that involves the use of walking poles, may be just the change your workout plan is craving.

Perhaps, one of the greatest benefits of Nordic walking, which is often also referred to as ski walking or exerstriding, is that the addition of poles has been shown to decrease impact to the ankles, knee and hips. This factor may be especially notable to exercisers who have had surgery or just general problems due to wear and tear.

But even if such ailments have not affected you, adding poles to your walking routine will burn up to 30% to 50% more calories because of the fact that their use can lead to a 90% involvement of your muscles. For example, a 40-year-old woman who weights 132 pounds and goes for a 30-minute walk will burn 150 calories versus the 300 calories she will burn when walking with poles.
And runners can throw them into their workout mix, too. The equipment can increase a runner’s cardiovascular endurance by simply using the poles and different stride patterns, like the arm stride, back stride and large skip stride. Find instruction in your area by searching “walking with poles” on the Internet.

You may feel a bit silly with those poles in hand, but the fact of the matter is, the benefits of your so-called silliness will outnumber the smirks from strangers.

Hey, you’ll be the one with the rockin’ body anyway, right?! [ABC News]

Posted: 6/3/08