I’m James Revell a Doctor of Chiropractic and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne and I recommend walking as a great form of exercise. I have worked in Eastbourne since 2004 and have always taken an active approach to keeping fit and healthy. In this blog I would like to share some tips on self help ideas to explore when walking. I have been a member at many of the local gym’s in Eastbourne and as a chiropractor I am always keen for my guests (patients) to keep active.
Chiropractors Recommend Walking As A Way To Keeping Active
Walking is one of the easiest ways to get more active, lose weight and become healthier. However, for some walking can aggravate aches and pains, or they simply cannot understand why it is supposed to be enjoyable and easy.
Walking as a form of movement can bring many benefits but when walking consider the following and explore these actions.
Keep Your Head Up
Many people look down when they are walking, worried that they may trip or fall. Looking down brings the neck down with it which puts strain on the muscles and a compression of the spine. Looking out pushes the chin forward and can squash the back of the neck.
Pay attention to the top joint of your spine between your ears and allow that area to be a little freer. If you need to look down then let your eyes drop first and allow a gentle nod of the head without shortening your neck column. When going up hills, try to visualise the crown of the head leading the way.
The Weight of the World on Your Shoulders
We can get into bad habits with the way we use our arms and shoulders for emotional and psychological reasons. Walking is a great time to release a lot of that tension. Allowing the arms to float out to each side will widen the front and back of you. Swinging your arms naturally results in rotational movement throughout your whole body. Try not to restrict your hands and fingers by holding anything or putting them in your pockets. If you need to carry a bag try a rucksack so that the weight is evenly distributed.
Walking On Air
Think of how you are walking, do you have a heavy tread for example. Try to let the hip joint be free and allow the leg to swing like a pendulum. Be aware of the space around you which can help you expand and breathe more freely.
Spring In Your Step
Once in this more relaxed swing try to keep your feet more underneath you and stride out to lessen stiffening of the foot and ankle. Wear shoes that enable your feet to be at their natural shape, range of movement and flexibility. Even walking barefoot stimulates the arch muscles and wakes up the sensory awareness of your feet.
Some of the team taking part in the Santa walk/run along Eastbourne seafront
Our busy lives and thoughts can interfere with our balance, breathing and using our energy effectively. Try to practice being attentive to yourself and your environment. For example pick something in the distance ahead of you and as you walk imagine that you are on a travelator. Try to relax the eyes and let them move freely to what draws them. When we are rushing around we often pull in our chests and this can compress the back. Try walking backwards while thinking of your back becoming long and broad, then when you turn forwards again see if you can keep this sense of your back. This is good to try going up hills and here in Eastbourne we have Beachy Head and The Seven Sisters which are great places to try this out!
Any of the Chiropractors here at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne can give you more self- help tips and advice on a range of topics.
Walking on a treadmill in a gym can have its benefits but to maximise your physical and mental wellbeing, seek out natural environments that can give you pleasure. Exposure to nature and green space positively affects our health and well-being.
Whatever your age or ability, walking and keeping on the move will improve balance, co-ordination, freedom of movement and confidence.
For more information and other self-help ideas and tips you can also check out my personal site where I share my back care top ten tips. If you’re in Eastbourne, Seaford, Hailsham, Bexhill or the surrounding East Sussex areas then we’d love to see you at our clinic. We’re based in Eastbourne town centre. However if you’re not local then we suggest you ask friends for personal recommendation for a chiropractor local to you.
Chiropractor and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne
Call now 01323 722499