Nordic Walking and Osteoporosis
April 4, 2018 | By Urban Poling
Osteoporosis Canada predicts that by the year 2020, 50% of people aged 50 and over will be at risk of bone fracture. Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by bone tissue deterioration and low bone mass, which increases the chances of bone fracture and although it may have prevented Bonnie Lindsay from running, it did not stop her from being active and travelling. Bonnie is a personal fitness trainer and certified Urban Poling instructor who attributes walking with poles as an essential part of her recovery after undergoing bilateral knee and hip replacements.
“Osteoarthritis sidelined me 25 years ago; no more running, no more downhill skiing. I eventually lost so much range of motion I couldn’t ride a bike. Eventually, once I was considered ‘old enough’ I had first one knee, then the other replaced. Both surgeries were very successful, but still no running, no downhill skiing, and swimming and cycling just didn’t do it for me. I sure was grumpy!
Then I discovered an Urban Poling class and this activity hugely increased my quality of life, so much so that I became an instructor. After a couple of years with the group, then months of dedicated training (that’s me backpacking my granddaughter on a training hike) my husband, his mother, and I were able to hike down to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, then back up 2 days later.”
Her goal of staying active, aligns with Osteoporosis Canada’s recommendation that, “exercise is an important step towards protecting your bones, as it helps protect your spine, slows the rate of bone loss, and builds muscle strength, which can prevent falls.”
Bonnie encourages urban poling as it promotes good posture, core strengthening and are “spine-sparing”. In Bonnie’s words, “Watch your posture, stand up straight, carry your head level and right over your spine. Place a downward force on the ledge of the CoreGrip of the Urban Poles, to force yourself to stand upright, off load on your hips and knee and to have support to help prevent slips and falls. Bonnie hopes other people with OP take up urban poling and stated, ” I have beaten the odds and life is good. This would not have been possible without my Poles!”
Be sure to read all about Bonnie’s tips for staying health and inspiring story: https://www.pressreader.com/canada/ottawa-
Keep your poles more upright and in front of you. Lean forward slightly, and use the poles to help push you up the hill. If necessary, bend your elbows, but remember to transition back to the straight arm technique at the top of the hill
–Barb Gormley, Director of Education