We learn to walk as infants, so it’s unsurprising that the human body seems built for walking. For young and old alike, walking can have profound physical and mental health benefits.
Let’s take a closer look at some of them.
Move the Body, Gently
Walking is the best way to get the body moving without putting stress or pressure on the joints. Rougher, more extreme forms of exercise like contact sports get the heart rate pumping, but those health benefits can be offset by the risks.
Walking is one of the safest forms of exercise a person can do. Swimming is also excellent because the water is very soft on people’s joints and minimizes the chance of injury. However, walking is way more accessible; everyone has a pair of shoes, but not everyone has access to a pool or a body of water.
Connect with Neighbours and Your Locale
You can walk on a treadmill and enjoy the health benefits, but walking outdoors lets you connect with the people around you and check in on what’s going on in your region. Chat with a local shopkeeper or friend, feel the sun on your skin and breeze on your face, and keep tabs on local developments.
Belonging to a community can lead to whimsical, joyful, unpredictable experiences you didn’t plan when you woke up that morning, but you need to actually move through it. Walking moves you at the right speed, quick enough to cross town but slow enough to chat and smell the roses.
Perhaps no activity can immediately improve your mood quicker than going for a walk. If you’re sad or stressed, a walk can only help. If you’re in a good mood already, a walk will only add to your joy.
If people have serious, diagnosed issues, walking won’t replace the benefits of therapy. Walking is not supposed to be relied on for that, but it’s one of the healthiest and most accessible ways to feel better quickly.
Limits of a Walk
Sometimes you’d like to walk in far-flung places you’ve never been or recall a beautiful stroll you once took on a trip long ago. Even the memory of a walk can be rewarding, as can imagining a new one.
These tips about armchair travel for seniors can help older adults get a sense of exciting travel destinations from the safety and comfort of their own homes. Sometimes the body faces limits on where it can go that the mind doesn’t.
When you’re unable to walk the trails of Cinque Terra or a bustling market in New Delhi, pictures, other media, and your imagination can do wonders.
There is no shortage of aggressive health fads out there, from intense workout regimens to modish diets. However, one of the best things people of all can do for their minds and bodies is also the simplest — walking. Keep the above tips in mind, dress up for the weather and carry some water, and enjoy some lovely strolls.