Walking: what you're doing wrong and how you can fix it

5 Walking mistakes you may be making and how to solve them

Walking is the favorite type of workout for many people, as it's accessible, time-efficient, and low-impact. You don't need much equipment to go for a walk, and it isn't hard to adjust its duration and location to fit your needs. Prevent these 5 common mistakes and enjoy your healthy workout without any risks or fears!

1. 1. Wearing the wrong footwear

Buying the wrong walking shoes can increase the impact on your feet and cause blisters.

Good walking shoes are the only equipment you need to go for a walk, which is why it's key that they're adequate. They should be supportive, be the correct size, and feel good overall. Cushioning and stiff soles can help you gain structural support for your feet and ankles, and getting shoes that are the right size will prevent blisters and rubbing. Try to break new pairs in before going for a long walk as well.

2. 2. Avoiding hydration

Not having water with you or going for a walk without taking in fluids can lead to dehydration.

The importance of drinking water before and during a walk shouldn't be underestimated. One or two hours before working out, drink some fluids to prevent dehydration. This doesn't mean you don't have to drink water every 30 minutes or an hour during your walk. The amount of water and the period between each sip depends on your body and the environment's temperature.

3. 3. Disconnecting from your environment

It can be dangerous to completely disconnect from your surroundings while walking, for example, with extra-loud music.

If you go for a walk outside, it's necessary to be aware of your surroundings. This includes planning and remembering your route, letting someone know where you're heading and when you'll come back, dressing accordingly to the weather to stay warm and dry, and paying attention to any cars, bikes, or other walkers. Even though listening to music can help your mood and performance, consider using one earbud or lowering the volume, so as to pay attention to what's going on around you.

4. 4. Tensing your body

Carrying a lot of tension in your arms and shoulders can be very uncomfortable and can worsen your walking experience.

When walking, you may feel some tension on your shoulders and arms. While this isn't risky if it lasts a few minutes, it can strain your body if it goes on for more than 20 minutes. Prevent this discomfort by paying attention to your body while walking: check that your neck is in a neutral position, aligned with your spine, and that your shoulders are loose.

5. 5. Taking wide steps

Walking can have negative long-term consequences if your steps are too wide.

Your center of gravity is under your trunk, which is why stepping out too far in front of it can reduce your stability and cause you to instinctively apply extra force on your legs and feet. In the long-term, you can suffer from pain and injuries such as shin splints. Instead, try quicker and shorter steps if you wish to pick up your pace.

Nick Connelly

Though he spent most of his time on camera, covering major sports events, Nick’s life-long dream was to become a sports columnist. Today, Nick researches and covers workout routines, exercise-related tips and tricks and sports diets. In need of an effective training routine? Look no further than Nick’s articles.+ info

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