Nordic Walking can benefit Breast Cancer Survivors

We are preparing at Balance Walking ( Nordic Walking – the generic term ) to meet the needs of Doctors, Physical Therapist, Coaches, and as well all those whom want to participate in the clear trending towards physical activity as the best medicine to reduce or eliminate disease processes. We know that daily physical activity is vital for everyone regardless of ones current health or health challenge.

Pole Walking
Pole Walking and Breast Cancer

We are gathering teams of professionals and community ambassadors  ( please, if you believe you can play a part – contact Terry D. Kennedy the Exec. Dir. of Balance Walking at tkennedy@balancewalking.com ) that want to be part of our beta Balance Walking Breast Cancer program. The program will open to 100s of participants using the Poles as prescribed by their Doctors and Therapist whether for  Prehab, Rehab and or Maintenance.  We will be able to provide the teaching materials and poles at a much reduced cost so that no one will be left out of the program.  We will encourage each person to participate with a minimum of one individual in their weekly activity for a minimum of 12weeks.

To be honest this activity attracts a lot of positive attention, so you may find yourself with a good size group.

The entire Balance Walking program includes several key Wellness Pillars that can be reviewed on our main Balance Walking website . This post is meant to announce how we will begin to integrate the Poles as Step One.

We know that Nordic Walking delivers as the research has shown all the obvious health and fitness benefits that lead to prevention and an increase in the QOL (Quality of Life).

I am including an article done in 2009, that is really just a snippet below that suggest the varying Pole Walking benefits to Lymphedema (sometimes  occur with Breast Cancer patients due to treatment and surgery side-effect from Breast Cancer).

How to Do Arm Lymphedema Exercises

Pole walking, also called Nordic walking, uses your arms, shoulders, upper chest and back muscles. While you’re getting a good cardio workout, all your major joints are exercised, and your muscles will get stretched and lengthened.

When done properly, pole walking is done while your arms are relaxed. Your shoulders will be working in a swinging motion, similar to shoulder flexion, but with a greater range of motion. This continuous motion should help excess lymph fluid move back into circulation and help you avoid arm lymphedema.

Pole Walking – Standing Exercise

Remember: Always wear your compression sleeve on your affected arm during exercise.

Use a set of fitness walking poles that have a hand strap at the top. The poles should remain behind your stride and always point diagonally backwards as you walk. These will help you exercise your shoulders, assist with balance, and provide support for knee joints and leg muscles. Keep your shoulders relaxed and hold the poles near your body.

  1. Step forward with your right foot, and swing your left arm forward, up to waist height. Your left pole hits the ground just behind your right foot.
  2. Keep your torso upright, don’t lean forward as you walk.
  3. Let your right arm straighten out behind you, forming a line that ends at the tip of your right pole. Roll your left foot from heel to toe as you walk, pushing off with your toe.
  4. Alternate feet and poles, while maintaining good posture as you pole walk.

For a complete explanation of pole walking technique and to learn more about the benefits of this exercise, visit the About.com Walking site.

Sources:

The Effect Of Gentle Arm Exercise And Deep Breathing On Secondary Arm Lymphedema. A.L. Moseley, N.B. Piller, C.J. Carati. Lymphology 38 (2005) 136-145.

Exercise and Arm Lymphedema. Karin Johansson, RPT, LT, Lymphedema Unit, Lund University Hospital, Dr. Med. Sci, Dep. of Health Science, Lund University, Sweden. Physiotherapy Theory Practice, 2009 Apr; 25(3):165-73.

4 thoughts on “Nordic Walking can benefit Breast Cancer Survivors”

  1. What a great idea to help cancer rehabilitation with Nordic pole walking. I try to bring Moving for Life, a dance- exercise training for woman with breast cancer to Denmark. It is a training program specially designed for all the side-effects of breast cancer treatment. The training program has been developed by Dr. Martha Eddy from New York and runs now about 11 years in New York with good results. We run a trainer program with Martha this summer her in Denmark. It would be great if I could link to your homepage and vise versa?
    Friendly greetings Ute Lang http://www.Creaum.dk or Moving for Life.org You can also find a film about Moving for Life on You Tube

  2. I would be very interested to learn more from Dr. Martha Eddy from New York as well as yourself. My email is tkennedy@balancewalking.com . I am the Exec Dir of Balance Walking. Martha can connect with me by phone as well @770-916-5996

  3. I am a Nordic Walking instructor and a therapist working in a Cheshire hospice with patients with life threatening illnesses. I am interested in starting working with breast cancer survivors. I would like some advice as to encouraging management to take on board the benefits of this type of exercise. Many thanks. Frances

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