Category Archives: Nordic Walking

Five Steps To Improve Attitude!


Staying mobile is one of the most important things you can do for yourself.

Mobility is the key to longevity, so keep moving to stay in shape. Adding Balance Walking Poles will bring additional benefits to your walk, and allow you to achieve your goals in half the time. Walking with poles engages 90% of the muscles and burns up to twice the calories in half the time.


Since intense interval training should be done sparingly and for short duration, walking should never really leave your conditioning portfolio. After all, interval training for over 30 minutes at more than 75 percent intensity can be detrimental to your gains.2

As a result, low-impact walking is a great activity to employ on your non-interval conditioning days. It increases heart health and helps your muscles and joints stay healthy. It even decreases stress. Adding poles increases cardio by up to 21%, while decreasing pressure on the joints up to 30%.

You really only need to walk a maximum of 30-45 minutes a day, but when adding Balance Walking to your regime just15-20 minutes will do the job. 1 Interval training paired with a few weekly walks will keep you lean and mean.


VISIT BALANCE WALKING.COM AND TAKE 25% OFF ALL ORDERS, use code hw25. Balance Walking poles can help with all the steps below that will get you well on your way to an improved attitude.

  1. Stand Up, because if you stay in a seated position for more than one hour you lose circulation to your entire body. Poles by your desk or couch can serve as a tangible reminder to get up and move.
  2. Stretch to increase blood flow to the muscles. Stretching feels good for a good reason, it has a multitude of benefits. Use the poles to stretch holding above your head and gently leaning to one side.
  3. Take a Walk, because moving on the outside helps to keep everything on the inside moving along. Poles + Walking = 90% Muscle Engagement
  4. Breathe Deeply, oxygen is what the body is trying to deliver to all the cells. Your body needs a large supply of oxygen to deliver it to all 37.2 trillion cells. Poles naturally align your body to stand erect and this helps your lungs expand and increase oxygen intake.
  5. Keep Walking and keep it fun by adding Balance Walking Poles. You have been walking for decades, adding poles adds a new enjoyment level. It has been proven that if your mind is enjoying your exercise choice your body will receive more benefits. All this happens, just by adding poles, and that simple addition also reduces the perceived rate of exertion…in other words… POLE WALKING FEELS EASIER THAN WALKING WITHOUT POLES, WHILE INCREASING ALL THE BENEFITS TO YOUR BODY!corwell2 It is no wonder that Europeans look at you funny if you are out walking briskly without a set of poles. They make it naturally easy to maintain good form, even after many miles. It is a simple concept that has become the #1 choice for exercise in Europe and Australia.   Circulation + blood flow + oxygen = steps to a great attitude!
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Pole walking can give you a great lift

The obvious question upon spotting someone walking along with poles in their hands – for those who are not aware that enthusiasts claim it burns 46 per cent more calories than normal walking – is why?

“We do get funny looks when we’re out walking,” admits Helen Beckley, 32. “Safety in numbers – we’re all looking mad together, and we enjoy it, so we don’t mind. But if I got a dirham for every time someone passing me said: ‘Oh, you’ve forgotten the snow,’ I’d be very rich!”

Beckley became the UAE’s first qualified Nordic Walking instructor two years ago and works with ProActive sports company, which runs twice-weekly Nordic Walking sessions on Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island.

“It originated from cross-­country skiing and it’s what cross-country skiers do in the off-season,” she says, “so people associate it with snow.”

Nordic Walking is not to be confused with trekking, hill walking or trail running, which use different poles and techniques. Nordic walking poles are gripped and released so as to give the upper-body muscles a workout at the same time as the legs.

“The poles help to propel the walker along,” explains Beckley. “It means you work harder than usual, yet the support given by the poles makes it feel easier.”

Beckley alternates her routes each week and varies the focus of the sessions too.

“Sometimes we’ll find some slopes – hills would probably be a bit of an exaggeration – to go up and down. I always try to include a bit of strength work as well so we might stop and do some press-ups or triceps dips on the benches en route.”

In Dubai, British expatriate Joanna Macdonald, 53, leads groups pole-walking – or “soul walking” as she likes to call it. Whereas Beckley’s groups are run primarily as a way for people to get fit, Macdonald set up Keenfit Middle East in Dubai seven years ago.

“Previously, I was head of corporate affairs for HSBC and then Barclays, I had two young children and I worked 24/7. The miracles of life were passing me by,” she recalls. “I had an epiphany, and decided to change my priorities. Running Keenfit walking groups was a wonderful way to meet people again. When you’re walking, you let go and talk about things. People keep their eyes down when they first start. I tell them to acknowledge people who walk by with their eyes, because you feel so much happier by making eye contact.”

Macdonald’s Canadian Keenfit walking poles, which she sells for Dh250, come with three different toggles at the bottom so they can be adjusted for sand, flat paths and fields.

Since launching the business, Macdonald has helped to establish Keenfit-affiliated groups as far away as Africa. A representative of the Saudi National Guard, who learnt to pole-walk with Macdonald in Dubai, now has his troops doing it in Jeddah.

“Pole-walking is a great stepping stone to get back to exercise for people who carry a lot of weight or haven’t been flexible for a long time,” says Macdonald. “The poles aren’t just there to give you extra cardio, they’re also there to support you so you’re walking in perfect alignment. Like yoga, pole-walking helps to create balance.”

Balance With Benefits

balancewalkinglabel picture    Balance With Benefits

This is an article published in the CMTA Magazine and written by JOSEPH GREGORY STILWELL, DPM, FACFAS, read about all the Benefits of Balance Walking…

Imagine being a four-legged animal, using Nordic walking poles to prowl city streets with the strength and balance of a big cat on a savannah. Now imagine using Nordic walking poles to participate in yoga and Pilates. Imagine walking outside, breathing deeply, chest wide and spine lifted tall.

Exercise walking? Some of us just want to increase our confidence on stairs, step gracefully over a curb or get help with a weak ankle or painful back. Nordic walking poles have a patented three-piece strap that allows the user to open the palm of the hand and push downward into the poles, lifting the rib cage and giving the lungs plenty of room for expansion. A whole hour can be spent using the poles for bending, stretching or squatting—all exercises that help with balance.

Those of us with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease are used to walking a little differently. We may “lurch” when fatigued, the result of our upper bodies favoring one side or another as we walk. With a set of walking poles, though, we become rhythmic, smooth and mostly pain-free. While few of us can achieve the physical therapists’ ideal of symmetry between the two halves of the body, with walking poles we can function as if our length, strength and flexibility were equal throughout our bodies.

Walking poles offer people with CMT not just a way to get and stay fit, but also a training aid for walking and balance. Medical studies on “pole walking” uniformly show better breathing, less stress on joints, and other significant advantages over running, including more calories burned in less time. In a related note, evidence has been mounting that using a tempo like a simple musical rhythm helps with neurological re-training. Walking with poles at a basic metronome-like pace results in smoother nerve conduction. For urban or hard surface walking, a rubber tip can be placed on the end of each pole. This allows one to truly push into the pole, lift the spine and propel the legs forward. These high-traction rubber tips help keep one from sliding when performing a leg up stretch or pushing the body into a lifted twist using the arms and shoulders.

The beauty of using two Nordic-style poles when walking is that as your legs get tired and foot drop or ankle rolling gets worse, the poles can be “push-pulled” to use the stronger muscles of the shoulders and trunk to take stress off the tired legs and feet. Plus, you can always stop and do some stretches, deep knee bends or twists with the poles to bring a spring to your step.

My wife and son and I recently pole-walked through the Loop area of Chicago. It was a joy to be able to gaze upward at the tall buildings with confidence that our poles would keep us upright, stable and able to lean back to peruse the beautiful architecture. The same technique works in wooded areas or parks where we can admire the tree tops, listen to nature’s sounds and even muse at the clouds—much like being a kid again.


Interested in implementing Dr. Greg’s recommendations and getting

Nordic fit? Balance Walking will donate $30 to the CMTA for each

set of poles sold. The CMTA and your body will both thank you!

Visit and enter the coupon code “CMTA”

to get started! A free motivational book is included in your order.


CMTA Advisory Board member Dr. Greg Stilwell demonstrating the body alignment Balance Walking Poles promote.

BALANCE WALKING changes the way we age…no matter the age…

Let’s take your Walking to the Next Level… of health, fitness and motivation. Just 15 minutes of low impact activity a day using 90 percent of your muscle improves; tone, cardiovascular and respiratory function, reduces joint impact, increase calorie burn, body balance, increased mobility and that’s for starters…

Morning Walkers in The Villages

Balance Walking was recently introduced in January of 2013 to The Villages Florida and continues to grow. This is a 55 plus community with over 107,000 residents. I invited the residents to participate for no cost instruction and poles in an email blast, sent to 1200 residents. The first 8 hours of classes were filled in1 hour along with a waiting list of over 100 residents. In just a few short months over 500 Balance Walking residents were walking with poles, alone or in groups. This continued demand is on track to rise to well over 1000 residents by year end. I encourage all Walkers to join Balance Walkers to walk together, and in time discover how much greater the health benefits are with Balance Walking.

The Balance Walking poles and program has now become the official Pole Walking Club in The Villages and is on track to be the Next Pickle Ball Phenomena, as it is rolled out in the future to over 28 recreation facilities. The worlds’ first Walk n Neighbors Directory is filling daily in The Villages while reaching other retirement communities as well in the U.S.

Keep your eyes out for the News Headline which reads – “The Next Fitness and Health Wave in this Millennium – the answer to the ever increasing health epidemic we are facing in the US. The Health Equation may look like this; Poles + People = Better Health through Prevention delivered with an easy to do and motivational program. All ages, all health and fitness levels, all regions of the US.

Prevention Magazine Study group Balance Beauties from Iowa

In fact, the Balance Walking Poles will become an inter-generational innovative fitness tool, as it becomes the first activity of its kind to bridge the active aging with younger generations. We all desire more time together with family and friends, right….

Kids having Fun with Instruction

Balance Walkers in The Villages at 450+ in JUNE

Let’s move, by taking Walking to the Next Level                                              

                                     THE VILLAGES, FLORIDA – June 24 – 26


Sumter Landings Wilkerson’s Creek Picnic Pavilion

  8am & 10am & NOON

LIMITED SPOTS AVAILABLE (12 participants / session)


Everyone is welcome to come and watch or walk with us without Poles while YOU learn more

FIRST STEP FOR EVERYONE: Contact Terry Kennedy at 770-653-5995 with any questions or simply send an email with name, phone number & village community, saying – “COUNT ME IN BEGINNER or COUNT ME IN INTERMEDIATE or COUNT ME IN ADVANCED”. Choose a Session – DAY & TIME that you wish to attend. Make sure to add your NAME, EMAIL, PHONE and Village you live. Due to limited spots available we will send follow-up email with “SESSION CONFIRMED or SESSION FILLED” email. If Sessions are FILLED we will contact you with any cancellations and as well for sessions coming at the end of July.

6 BEGINNER TRAINING SESSIONS – June 24 at 10am & Noon – June 25 at 8am & 10am – June 26 at 8am & 10am.  One hour of FREE training. Poles will be provided to those who need. Many prefer to have their own poles which can be purchased at . Go to BUY NOW, enter discount code: summerjune at checkout to save $20.00/pair. Poles retail at 49.95 + 10.00 ship = 59.95 so your poles are 39.95. You will be given your poles at training.

2 INTERMEDIATE TRAINING SESSIONS – June 24 at 8am – June 26 at Noon. One hour of training – will be for those who attended sessions in January – May (some exceptions however) and will include specific instruction for; cardio, toning, flexibility training. They will want to register online for training at . You will then go to BUY NOW, at left side click on Local Events, and make $10.00 payment at checkout.

1 ADVANCED STRETCH CORDS & POLE TRAINING SESSION – June 25 at Noon. 1 hour of training open to those that have purchased stretch cords in advance or those that reserve limited loaner supply. In any case we must talk on the phone to determine your physical ability and the availability of stretch cords and poles. After we talk you will want to register online for this training at You will go to BUY NOW, at left side click on Local Events, and make $10.00 payment at checkout. We will be videoing this training as well as this will be the first training of its kind in the U.S.

All the session are open to everyone in The Villages whom can walk unassisted – being without a cane or walker.  We are beginning discussions with Medical professionals so that we can integrate when appropriate. Please feel free to have your Doctor or Health professional reach out to me.

And of course we want everyone to meet others and sign up to be listed in the Walk n Neighbor Directory whether you are able to take a session or not in June. As we said before all walkers are welcome to join


– Our mailing address –
Balance Walking take Walking to the Next Level
104 Interstate North Parkway East, SE
Atlanta, GA 30339


Over 350 in The Villages Balance Walking Today

Yes it’s a great day in The Villages. I am anticipating that many will take advantage of the Walk n Neighbors Directory. All those Balance Walking or just Walking without poles who want to meet other residents who are their neighbors are all eager to sign on. This is an answer to the many calls and emails daily from new Balance Walkers wanting to locate others to walk, that may live in their Village neighborhood. I anticipate connecting 100s of walkers over the next several months.

Walk n Neighbors St Charles Angels
Walk n Neighbors St Charles Angels

As of today I am compiling over 350 of The Villages new Balance Walkers in the 1st ever Walk n Neighbors Directory. All they need to start is to provide me their name, an email and or phone (optional), their district #, and the specific Village community they reside (no address). This can be sent to my email – or they can call me at 770-653-5995 with any questions.

To help get the word out an announcement is forth coming in the Daily Sun paper to locate all the Balance Walkers whom have poles. I will reach out as well and provide the same connections in the directory for those whom walk without poles. I am told that every resident reads the Daily Sun paper from cover to cover, so I anticipate a surge of Walk n Neighbors being added to the Directory.

With several neighbor groups forming like the St Charles Angels Balance I know one thing for sure – that a Balance Walker is not hard to spot. They all are smiling, talking and in some cases more fit and mobile than they have been in years.

By the way you all look Fantastic!!!! They have discovered Walking at the Next Level…and that can be virtually any level. Whether for health, fitness, sport, rehab, or being simply more mobile….

Lastly, I am waiting on some action shots of the St Charles Angels which I will post later. Any one walking can take a 30sec iPhone video or snapshot which can be sent via email virtually instantly to me at so that I can post and share…

Captiva Wacky Walkers is official Balance Walking Club in The Villages

IT’S OFFICIAL!!!!! Balance Walking is now a New Club listing in The Villages Daily Sun. click on image below, then search in Club section near pg 59 for the Wacky Walkers of Captiva – this is updated weekly at .


This is the paper that everyone reads everyday to keep up with all the happenings in The Villages. When I say happenings, there is so much to do that they may want to establish a Happenings Concierge just to help residents decide from the multitude of activities for each day.

With over 1900 club meetings in The Villages that are overseen through The Villages District Government you can know that promoting an active and healthy lifestyle is paramount.

We can thank the club leaders Captiva Rec Center who all enjoy using their Balance Walking Poles – Maryann, Barb and Shirley ) whom all have unanimously added the poles to their own day. And of course the great friends they are making each day.

One of the most popular types of classes in TV focuses on Walking. There are 6 Walking Class types ( aerobics, beginners, intermediate, boot camp, advanced with strength training, walk away the pounds basics ) and now they have added the 7th group/club called the Wacky Walkers of Captiva. This meetup is outdoors utilizing of course their Balance Walking Poles beginning with just 15minutes and progressing to 45minutes. Of course some will find themselves going longer or more often during the day.

Ready to get started? Contact Captiva Rec Center or one of the other 27 Recreation Center Supervisors for help.

Terry Kennedy – Exec Dir, Donna Robertson – Resident experienced in foot,knee hip or Malcolm Barry – The Villages – Foot Solutions, whom have held about 30 plus sessions and can be easily reached to offer help should you have questions, interest in learning how and or beginning your own group/club.

Balance Walking refreshes at Subway in The Villages

March 9th thru March 12th was another successful 4 day week of 12 – 1.5 hour sessions in The Villages…  I am confident when I say; that all the residents participating have been so very receptive to Balance Walking,  many have talked to their friends and are wanting to know when we are coming back,  and this all confirmed with residents everywhere walking with Balance Walking Poles… I wanted to do a quick blog update before it became old news ( have been very busy answering phone calls, emails and connecting dots ).

Here is one of the many fun shots ( pictures & videos ) of just one the groups on an hour long fitness tour throughout Sumter Landing… We made a quick stop for a lite refreshment at Subway.

Balance Walking refreshing at Subway in The Villages

While out for an hour fitness walk we were being stopped and asked countless times — What we were doing? Looks like Skiing! Do you have a business card or information? Where do you get the Poles? And many more…

Everyone’s’ answers covered much, yet generally included that Balance Walking is:

  • First –  it is easy to do
  • Second – it increases the fitness and health benefits of regular walking
  • Third – it was a lot of fun to be with others in a group making new friends
  • Lastly – your not  huffing and puffing

The Wacky Walkers is the official first group of many more I am sure to get started. Maryann in Captiva has volunteered and really loves it as each week her group grows. Balance Walking will become an official listing as a club activity meeting at the Captiva Recreation Center. This first club will of course help other residents whom may live closer to the many other recreation centers throughout The Village to form their own groups.

Walking Groups have and advantage unlike anywhere in the world as they use The Villages – Recreation Lifestyle Leader program. Anyone ( really all composed of residents ) can contact their Recreation Centers and go through an easy application that facilitates virtually everyone to be confident and know they will have all the support to grow their activity. You have to love this kind of support as the community supports the community…


The Daily Sun Mar 8 2013 Captiva Balance Walking

Maryann’s Announcement:

Wacky Walkers of Captiva                                          

Mondays, Wednesdays at 5:30 PM and Saturdays at 9 AM

Picnic Pavilion at Captiva Recreation Center

This new group is for healthy active walkers who want to get more out of your everyday walking. It is an approximately 45 minute walk outdoors using balance walking poles. Poles are available at Foot Solutions in Spanish Springs or online at . Meet at the picnic pavilion at Captiva Recreation Center. New walkers always welcome, no commitments necessary, come when you can and bring your poles.

Contact for more info these great residents:

Maryann Berry –

Barb Miller –

Shirley Halloran –


Balance Walking is a Hit in The Villages, Fl

The Villages – Balance Walking – March 9-12, 2012

1st Official Regularly Scheduled Group Mar 3 2013

The Villages is Americas Friendliest Community as well as the Healthiest Hometown in the U.S. and is offering Balance Walking. What a fantastic 2nd Event for Balance Walking on Feb 16-19 2013. Been so busy answering emails, phone calls, downloading great videos and photos, conferences by phone with health and medical professionals, providing tools to grow program with the The Villages Recreation Department. Not to mention all the participants following up with me who are already leading groups.

Oh, yes almost forgot I went back to The Villages by Popular Demand and offered 16 – 1.5hour sessions for this 2nd Event. These were for; new walkers, past walkers and advanced training for those whom desired to lead groups in Recreation Centers throughout The Villages. The Village qualifies these eager community members as Lifestyle Recreation Leaders. I believe they have the best Recreation & Health model in all the U.S. for creating and sustaining a community of active healthy people.

All of the sessions were filled to capacity with the total number being over 100 people. We started with a registration cap at 12 per session. That was quickly modified because of the demand to 15 per session. And registration did not stop there, in fact we needed to accommodate safely and with intended quality of instruction up to 32 being the most filled session. This was possible because of the support from those whom assisted in the Event in each and every session from 10 a.m. and finishing up at 5pm. All of our Events since January have relied on key people whom have assisted and made each a success.


Balance Walking is a Hit in The Villages


  • Alicia Jordon – is a Recreation Supervisor at one of the 28 Recreation Centers in The Villages, who has skillfully administered with her staff all the pre-event, event and post event dynamics in the introduction of Balance Walking to the this AWESOME COMMUNITY…


  • Donna Robertson – is a resident for 7 years in The Villages who is a consultant to Balance Walking, Inc. She is a pedorthics specialist with advanced and unique skills in the sports pedorthics area, as well as in the areas of injury recovery, custom-made orthotics and footwear related products, diabetic foot issues and advanced pedorthic solutions. Donna is of course an avid Balance Walker and golfer…


  • Malcolm Barry – is the co-owner of the local Foot Solutions in The Villages in Spanish Springs who is a pedorthic specialist. Malcolm is an avid Balance Walker with several years of experience under his feet…

Pre-instructions in The Villages Feb 16-19 2013

March 9 – 12 2013 we are coming back, and will need to be prepared to registration well over our Feb. 16 – 19 Session numbers I am sure. The primary goals are to do all of that we have in each session prior as well as empower and inspire Walk n Connect groups. These groups will be anywhere from 3 people up to dozens. Before I returned to Atlanta and since I have been gone, the residents have begun forming groups. I am confident that they are well on their way to becoming the next greatest health – fitness – sport activity in The Villages in 2013.

Invite: From the Recreation Supervisor at Captiva Recreation Center in The Villages

March 9 – Saturday at 10am – This session will be for those of you that worked closely with Donna Robertson so she could concentrate on your specific needs whether it be balance, bad knees/joints etc. trouble walking, etc. If you have any questions about whether this applies to you or not please let me know J Terry will provide poles for this group if you haven’t purchased them already for this session. If this is your first time and you have not worked with Donna and there is space available you may register.

March 9 – Saturday at 1pm and 3pm & March 10 – Sunday at 10am, 1pm and 3pm – These sessions are for those of you who have purchased your own poles (preferred not mandatory) and wish to have some more time improving, exercising, and socializing. Must be able to go on a decent length of a walk (Don’t worry! It’s not 10 miles!) Each session will be about an hour in length. You’ll venture around the same area you did before.

March 11 – Monday at 10am, 1pm, and 3pm – These sessions will be for all New Walkers and as well as past walkers whom would like to assist and train to be leaders in their own groups.

March 12 – Tuesday at 10am and 1pm – These sessions will be for all New Walkers and as well as past walkers whom would like to assist and train to be leaders in their own groups.

All session meet at Wilkerson’s Creek at Sumter Landing. This is located across the street from Sonny’s in Sumter Landing right next to the boat shaped playground.

All Residents of The Villages need to to register by contacting the Captiva Recreation at 352-259-7422 for the time slot you would like by March 8th. These will fill quickly so do not delay.

Get excited! This is an awesome activity!

Hope to hear from you soon!

Alicia Jordan, MBA


March 9 – 12, 2013 The Villages & BW Schedule

Encore at The Villages with Balance Walking

You know when you’re invited back for more – By Popular Demand – it’s safe to say you have given your best – not to mention all the great people who live in The Villages. I have met some amazing people during our training whom have moved to The Villages from everywhere. It’s exciting to hear what they love so much about The Villages.  In fact The Villages is as I have experienced in 4 days, with our beta group of 60 people registered for the Balance Walking Event – Without Question – “Americas Friendliest Community as well as the Healthiest Hometown in the U.S.”

Pole Squat practice to acheive perfect Form

If you remember in my last post prior to this Event I said; “My experience will confirm with a HUGE THUMBS UP that The Villages is not only “America’s Friendliest Community and Healthiest Hometown in the U.S.” They in fact have what I know will continue to be the standard for all future healthy active retirement developments.  I say retirement reluctantly as you see quickly everyone moving, engaged and happy not sitting, isolated or depressed.  Living Life Actively Aging – which should begin at birth and continue for everyone, right? Why Not? Remember – “We do not stop playing because we get old, we get old because we stop playing.”tk

The Villages & Balance Walking 2nd Event Feb 16-19 2013

Well, we are coming back, and will come close to doubling the registration for the Feb. 16 – 19 Sessions. We will be offering 16 – 1.5hour sessions which will be for; new walkers, past walkers and advanced training for those whom desire to lead groups in Recreation Centers throughout The Villages – possibly as Lifestyle Recreation Leaders. These sessions will fill up fast – they took only a few short hours in our first event visit.

Today as of 2pm we have 0ver 70 registered in the schedule shown below. If you are looking to register you will need to contact Alicia Jordon at the Captiva Recreation Center in the Villages sooner than later. Hope to see you there 😉

The Villages Balance Walking Event Schedule