We may walk like we breathe, unconsciously and naturally, it doesn’t necessarily mean we’re doing it right. Yes, you’ve been doing it your entire life and yet, you probably have been doing it the wrong way all along. Bra-vo.
Indeed, although we’re being taught how to stand up and put one foot after the other one, we all naturally decide how exactly we’re going to do it. However, the way walk does come with consequences: deformation of your muscles or even skeleton, increase of the risks of injuries or arthritis etc.
From the tip of our toe to the top of our spine, our walking pattern has an impact on our entire body.
To walk properly, you must watch three things: your posture, your stride and more importantly, your foot pattern, number one cause of muscular and joint injuries.
Therefore, we’ll dig in these three topics throughout the next few articles (so you can have time to digest each info).
Let’s get starting with the first step: having the right posture!
Walk with the right posture
Let’s first start with the most obvious point, but a little refresher never hurt anybody: pay attention to your posture. Simply put, having the right posture means maintaining your body in a way that allows your bones, joints and tendons to be perfectly aligned to support your every move. You probably have heard the one and only “Stand straight!” more than enough during your teenage years. Well thank you mom, thank you dad because standing straight is very important for your spine’s well-being while you walk. Of course don’t take it too far: the point is to have a natural position to relax your body.
Shoulders back and relaxed, let the natural swinging movement of your arms guide you: it helps keeping your body stable while on the move (no need to play the little soldier with your arms though).
Look up: you don’t need to put useless pressure on your neck by leaning forwards. Holding your head up (well, then again, straight) will prevent you from having painful tensions in your neck and/or shoulders and will also help you to walk straighter.
Your feet should also be pointing forward: be careful not to have them turned to the inside or outside, which could eventually result in a deformation of your entire legs and hips (the infamous legs in “X”)! In addition to not being very graceful, this torsion can become quite painful in your joints, a risk being increased over time. Now’s the time to work on that catwalk!
Finally, suck your belly in: you must feel you muscles’ engagement in every step. It will help you stand and walk straighter if you remember to have a stronger core.
Here’s an extra tip: if you want to have a toner walk, focus on your abs, thighs and butt by accentuating their contraction with each step. If you were looking for an easy way to get toner, here’s a simple way to do so every day!
You would have understood it: having a good posture is a key to not only looking good while you walk, but more importantly to feel good and avoid chronic pains.
But your posture is only one of the causes of the problems many people may have due to their way of walking. Indeed, your stride and foot pattern are the primary source of most evils, two topics we will go through during the next posts.
Feel free to let me know if you have any request regarding these types of topics and I’ll make sure to help you out the best I can 😉
I’ll see you soon to get into these bad boys, starting with the right stride.
Until then, take care and STAND STRAIGHT!