Walking is a very popular pastime because it is cheap, convenient and does not require any skills training. It is also very safe and enjoyable and not especially time consuming.
Benefits of Walking include
1/ Relaxation and socialisation.
2/ Improvement in bone health.
3/ Improvement in fitness, strength, posture and flexibility.
Physical Benefit include prevention of heart disease and stroke, osteoporosis, colon cancer, depression and spinal pain.
Safety Tips for a Walking Program.
1/ seek advice from your healthcare professional prior to commencing a program.
2/ Ensure that you warm up and cool down.
3/ Ensure maintenance of adequate hydration.
4/ Ensure sun safety including not exercising in the extremes of the day.
5/ Build up the distance and intensity of the activity in a slow and deliberate manner.
6/ Maintain a sound tall posture throughout.
7/ Ensure that you are able to talk at all times,
8/ Should you sustain an injury or illness- cease the activity immediately and seek medical attention. Pay particular attention to symptoms like chest pain or tightness, shortness of breath, arm pain or dizziness.
9/ Do not walk immediately after a meal.
10/ Walk on a firm dry even surface wherever practicable.
11/ Wear loose comfortable clothing in the heat and layered clothing in the cooler weather. At night wear reflective or light colours and stay near well-lit areas.
Advice Regarding Footwear.
The ideal walking shoe should bare the following characteristics,
1/ Choose a shoe with a rubber outer sole for durability.
2/ Seek out a spongy mid sole for flexibility.
3/ Ensure a comfortable padded heel collar moulded to your shape to control slippage and chaffing.
4/ A firm heel counter will aid stability.
5/ for comfort a toe box that allows wriggle room is recommended.
6/ A lace up shoe is preferable.
7/ Finally a shoe with a gripping tread for all terrains.
Tips for Diabetics and Walking.
1/ Walking can improve insulin sensitivity.
2/ Make a point to always test your glucose levels pre and post exercise.
3/ Always carry a quick absorption source of glucose such as a jellybean.
4/ Wear suitable footwear for both comfort and foot protection.
5/ Do a visual check of your feet pre and post exercise paying particular attention to any swelling, redness, chaffing or blistering.
6/ If you experience leg pain cease activity and rest for 10 minutes.
7/ Wear your diabetes identification at all times.
8/ Consult your health care professional promptly if and as issues arise with your exercise.