When you’re walking like normal, just carrying poles with you. This is what we call “2-wheel drive”.
As soon as you grip the poles and start using your upper body, you’re now in
“4-wheel drive” and the workout has just reached a brand new level.
Every step should begin with the heel touching the ground and rolling forward to the ball and toe area, where you will push off to propel yourself forward.
The hands should constantly be in a “grip-n-go” state with the pole. They should grip the pole every time the pole hits the ground, then let it go as it is drawn back behind the body, finishing up with an open hand.
As the arms continue to move the poles, the torso and hips should be involved in a counter-swinging motion from the lower body. This effectively works the mid-torso muscle groups.
Some of the typical mistakes beginning Nordic walkers could make might be:
Staying in “2-wheel drive”
By not using the upper torso correctly as part of your workout, you remain in 2-wheel drive.
Planting the poles too far from the body.
Having the poles too wide lowers the effectiveness of your Nordic walking.
Walking with Closed Hands
Keeping your hands closed at all times does not allow for proper blood circulation.
Walking with Open Hands
Walking with hands open all the time reduces the efficiency of your poling.
Improper leg and pole placement.
If the pole and leg are placed on the same side, you are not able to perform the proper diagonal stride with the hips involved in a counter-swinging motion.
By practicing the proper Nordic walking techniques, you will get a more complete and fun workout. Keep the poles close to the body, lean slightly forward, and remember to open and close the hand with each step.
People who are more fit can raise their heart rate even higher by using the poles to employ various techniques like jogging, running, jumping strides or skating.
With Nordic jogging, you’ll utilize more of the bottom of the foot, not rolling from heel to toe. The higher and longer strides are achieved by a combination of more forceful poling and more intense leg work.
Nordic skating uses jumping strides that zig-zag from left to right like a typical skating technique.
For detailed Nordic Walking Instruction see out Products page where you can order the first US Nordic Walking DVD/Video.