No one will argue the fact that we as a culture continue to face a health crisis. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), even with higher spending on health care, the US is producing worse health outcomes. Some of the facts from the Commonwealth Fund’s 2020 article include:
- The U.S. spends more on health care as a share of the economy — nearly twice as much as the average OECD country — yet has the lowest life expectancy and highest suicide rates among the 11 nations. (Roosa Tikkanen, Melinda K. Abrams)
- The U.S. has the highest chronic disease burden and an obesity rate that is two times higher than the OECD average. (Roosa Tikkanen, Melinda K. Abrams)
Lifestyle diseases continue to top the chart. Obesity is rampant, along with heart disease and diabetes. In response to this crises, walking has been studied and shown to be a great antidote to all of these.
Ways to Improve Overall Health
- Maintain a healthy weight: Being overweight or obese is a risk factor for heart attack and stroke.
- Regular Exercise: 30 to 60 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity five days a week. Brisk walking or a similar activity most days of the week can help with weight loss and lower blood pressure.
- Healthy Eating: Eat a variety of foods that include a rainbow of vegetables. Wait to eat until you are hungry and stop eating when you are satisfied.
How ChiWalking Can Help
- Keeps You Moving: The best solution is to learn to move well so you can continue moving more. ChiWalking, along with the mindfulness it promotes (in movement and lifestyle) is a simple solution to this deadly problem. Prevention goes a long, long way. While many health-related challenges may seem out of our control, exercising regularly is something we can completely control.
- Proper Form Keeps You Safe: The ChiWalking technique takes into consideration your form and how it interacts with gravity and the force of the oncoming road. ChiWalking teaches you how to move properly and efficiently so we can consistently walk without being sidelined by pain or injury.
- Make it a Mindful Practice: The ChiWalking practice is a form of mindful movement. Workouts become a time to learn more about our bodies. For instance, when your core is engaged and your posture is aligned, you may find that your lower back pain disappears. When you clear your mind and focus on your movement, you may feel your shoulders naturally relax as stress dissipates.
- Walking at a brisk pace has been proven to help combat depression and naturally elevate our mood. When practicing ChiWalking, we get the additional benefits of connecting our mental and physical selves. Because the technique helps walkers feel better and find joy while walking, we are more apt to stick to our practice, explore different speeds and distances.
How to Get Started:
- For walkers: ChiWalking DVD – ChiWalking makes it easy to get in shape. Begin at your own pace and establish a lifelong fitness program.
- For runners: ChiRunning DVD – Enjoy running and eliminate injuries – perfect for runners of all levels.
- For walk-runners: ChiWalk-Run DVD & program – Great for beginner runners, or walkers who want to introduce running into their workouts. Gentle, easy, and you’ll walk-run the 5K distance in just 8 weeks.
It’s not too late to turn your health around. You can learn to put your health first and begin listening to your body. Walking is a great way to start and with proper form, which will minimize impact, it can feel wonderful.