Frequently Asked Questions about Original Nordic Walking
If the question you have in mind does not appear in the list below, send us a direct e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us through our contact form - so we can personally answer your question.
Will ONW be just another fitness fad or gimmick that is here today and gone tomorrow?
Since 1997 this activity has spread across the globe following the publication of Marko Kantaneva’s groundbreaking manuscript called “Sauvakävely” (Nordic Walking) and is now being adopted by millions of people as their preferred method of physical exercise. It is growing from strength to strength in many areas, its use including rehabilitation, fitness activity, recreation and now, in some countries, as a competitive sport. Original Nordic Walking has stood the test of time and is still growing.
Am I too old to do Original Nordic Walking? I'm nearly eighty years old!
We know of people in their late eighties who have experienced the benefits of Original Nordic Walking. Importantly it provides a sense of security and confidence because you feel more balanced and stable on “four feet” instead of your usual two. Furthermore, by improving balance and stability you enhance the likelihood of greater mobility. So, if you are still able to walk at even a very slow pace try Original Nordic Walking and experience the difference.
Walking fast or jogging, will that give me the same results?
To walk fast (speed walking) or jog may not always give the best outcome. It will be governed by the individual's motivational limits and enjoyment levels. It also increases significantly the amount of stress put on the body which may lead to injury which and in turn reduces the enjoyment factor. Scientific studies show that using poles at a perceived lesser rate of effort or at a slower speed can achieve similar outcomes as speed walking or jogging.
How do I learn Nordic Walking if I don't have a qualified coach in my area?
The greatest thing about Nordic Walking is it's a very natural functional movement for the human body. It is easy to learn and rarely forgotten. The chapter "Getting started" is a great resource for you to learn the basics.
Where do I go Original Nordic Walking?
Original Nordic Walking is usually enjoyed in the great outdoors. It can be done on soft and hard surfaces as the poles are supplied with both hard metal spike tips for soft surfaces such as grassland, sand or compacted soil and the asphalt paws are used on hard surfaces such as concrete or asphalt. Original Nordic Walking is great in your favourite local park/sports ground or utilising your local suburban footpaths or an artificial all- weather track.
Do I have to join a club or association?
www.onwf.org sites offer a safe, supportive environment with the added benefit of extra free guidance and motivation in a fun atmosphere. But you may wish to walk alone or find a walking buddy or a group of friends to enjoy the convenience of Original Nordic Walking around your local neighbourhood at a time that suits you - read more...
Why can't I just use my ski or trekking poles or broom handles?
Trekking and ski poles have been designed specifically for their sport just like Original Nordic Walking poles have been. Original Nordic Walking poles have a unique design of strap which allows the user to obtain maximum push off from the strap without having to grip the handle of the pole firmly. Also, the handle of the pole is ergonomically designed to allow for easy handling whilst pole walking. Additionally, the spike tip has been designed to allow for maximum bite in the ground whilst completing the pole push off at the end of the pole walking action. The pole shafts are made of a very durable and lightweight composite or aluminium material with good flexibility and shock absorbing capabilities for the repetitive motion which is performed during Original Nordic Walking.
I suffer with knee injuries from running; can I really keep fit by walking with poles?
Yes, you no longer have to pound the footpaths and wear out your joints to get a good cardio-vascular workout. Whilst running you are only using your lower body muscles and your upper body mass is just going along for the ride and not really doing any work. But when you utilise the poles whilst walking you activate all the upper body muscle mass, which in turn creates a greater training effect with similar outcomes but with less joint impact. Let us explain how this happens: by adding the poles to your walk you are activating the large upper body muscles that are not used whilst running and in turn these large upper body muscles need more fuel which is transported by fresh oxygenated blood to make them function. The physiological responses to achieve this include: significantly increased oxygen uptake, elevation of your heart rate to a similar effective training zone as if you were jogging, a greater caloric expenditure and the benefits of enhanced muscle endurance for a total body workout.
What is the difference between Trekking and Original Nordic Walking?
Simply put, trekking is where you head off into the wilderness and create your own pathway through the various landscapes. You utilise a single pole, or pair, to support you and stabilise you from falling or slipping so they are used to prevent unexpected movement. With Original Nordic Walking you must use an existing pathway, parkland or beach and a pair of poles that are specifically designed to enhance movement in a propelling forward motion whilst still giving improved stability. Put simply, trekking poles are designed to give you stability/support to prevent unwanted movement and Original Nordic Walking poles are designed to enhance movement plus forward propulsion whilst still giving you stability/support. The straps and handles and spike tips are where the difference in design matters between the type of poles and usage.
Where can I purchase Original Nordic Walking Poles?
Selection of specially designed Walking Poles is critical to your specific needs. Good Nordic walking poles is available in all sport shops around the globe.
Original Nordic Walking
What is ONW?
ONW pole length
References about ONW research results