This walking workout that takes over FitTok works 90% of your muscles

So you’ve probably heard that walking is trendy (#HotGirlWalk is still trending). But not only is walking in vogue, it has also become the form of movement to prioritize. After all, it can improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen bones, muscles and endurance, boost energy levels, boost the immune system and reduce stress, not to mention improve mood, cognition, memory and sleep. . From working out on Taylor Swift’s treadmill to foodie walks, walking fans have a variety of styles and vibes to choose from.

And now for the latest iteration that takes over FitTok: Nordic walking. Imagine cross-country skiing, but lose your skis and keep your poles, and instead take a stroll, whether it’s along a sidewalk or trail, and you’ve got the fitness trend in a nutshell (no snow required). The difference between traditional walking and Nordic walking? The use of walking sticks to engage the arms and shoulders (more on that later). Read on to learn more about the workout, its benefits, and how to fit it into your fitness routine.

What exactly is Nordic Walking?

Originating in Finland and designed as an off-season training regimen for cross-country skiers, the low-impact full-body exercise involves the use of specially designed poles to engage the shoulders, arms and core muscles. Consider it upping the ante on your regular walking while simultaneously working your upper body.

According to the American Nordic Walking Association, the key to Nordic walking is to hold the poles close to the body at a 45-degree angle with the ends always planted behind the body (not straight up and down in front of the body), leaning slightly forward, opening and closing his hands at each step. Simply put, the idea is to use the poles to propel you forward. The more you train, the easier you will do (Nordic) walking. If you are a visual person, go to TikTok or YouTube to get a feel for the correct technique. Start with a flat, level surface (think: your neighborhood or a park) until you get comfortable with the motions. Then, you can climb rougher and more uneven terrain, like trails.

Bottom line: all you need is a solid set of poles (and ideally good weather) to enter your era of Nordic walking. Look for a pair that is the right length for your height and grip, and with higher-quality or glove-like wrist straps to help prevent wrist injuries. Excuse me as I go to Amazon to get my own set.


#fittok tipoftheday: incorporate some #nordicwalking into your #cardio routine! #PowerWalking is one of the best workouts in the world – it’s accessible, low impact and amazing for your health, #fat burners and mental wellbeing. You can do it every day to #lose weight and reduce the risk of diabetes. But did you know that you can amplify all of these benefits AND reduce the risk of falls (due to age, #joint pain, etc.) by tapping into the European #fitness routine of Nordic Walking? More #muscles used core, #upper body means better #calorie burn and a more effective workout suitable for any age and ability, from #athletes to beginners. It’s fun, #convenient and personally motivates me to (sometimes!) go out in cold weather. Make sure you learn the basics not only for your own safety but also to ensure you maximize all the fitness benefits. Or grab your poles and join me. Enjoy!

Good vibes The Beach Boys

The health benefits

Provides a low impact activity

Step aside, run, burpees, and jump squats (read: more traditional forms of cardio). Nordic walking can get your heart racing without putting any strain on your joints. Walking with poles helps redistribute weight across all four limbs, reduce joint loading, reduce the risk of back, neck and knee pain that typically occur with sustained high-impact exercise, and increase muscle strength.

It works the whole body

Nordic walking is different than regular walking because you’re still putting your lower body muscles to work, but you’re activating up to 90% of your muscles, compared to only 50% with an average walk. Because the poles add strength training and upper-body cardio components, working your arms, shoulders, upper back and core, you’re engaging in a full-body workout, Stephanie Mansour, a personal trainer.

Improve your posture

The range of motion utilized while walking with poles mobilizes and strengthens the upper body, which can help counteract the hunched over position we know all too well from the incessant scrolling on our phones (looking at you, tech neck). In fact, a 2017 study looked at office workers who completed a 12-week Nordic walking workout routine and the researchers found they had greater shoulder mobility and less pain in their trapezius muscles.

Increases cardiovascular health

More good news: Nordic walking is not only good for your whole body, but it also lends itself to important treatments for the health of your heart. A study published in Canadian Journal of Cardiology found that people with coronary artery disease (the most common type of heart disease in the US) had the best improvements in functional capacity a measure of an individual’s ability to exercise or do things that require physical effort when they did Nordic walking for three months on HIIT and moderate-to-vigorous intensity continuous training (MICT). Heart disease or not, the American journal of preventive medicine stated that Nordic walking provides beneficial effects on resting heart rate, blood pressure, exercise capacity, maximal oxygen consumption and quality of life in patients with various diseases and, therefore, can be a form of prevention for a wide range of people.

Strengthens cognitive function

Anyone looking to mix their workouts with a fun, accessible, and social activity is about to reap the many benefits of the walking fitness trend. Dr. Abbie Jones (AKA TikToker @blamedr.abbie) encourages Nordic walking every day, no matter your age. Whether you’re concerned about cognitive decline or just want to keep your brain healthy, you should be engaging your walking muscles, brain power muscles, and grip strength every single day, Dr. Jones suggested. So how do you use Nordic walking to improve brain health and prevent cognitive decline? Pair your Nordic walking with a cognitively stimulating task, like telling your best workout buddy what you’ve learned about a new topic that interests you and doesn’t know much about (lymphatic drainage massage, anyone?). The result? You’re activating your long-term memory and practicing a new skill while improving your overall physical health, engaging more areas of your brain at once, and enjoying a great day.


Nordic walking while doing something cognitively strenuous is SO good for your brain. I like listening to challenging podcasts or audiobooks. You might enjoy remembering something you learned the night before and interacting with someone as you walk. You could start counting backwards from 107 by 6 if it makes you think, count! #cognitivedecline #adhd #neurodivergent #alzheimer #brainhealth #neuropsychology #psychologistsoftiktok #fyp #nordicwalking #learn #science #summer

original sound Dr. Abbie Jones

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#walking #workout #takes #FitTok #works #muscles
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