Walking BenefitsIf you don’t walk at least a few times every week, today is a great time to start.

It’s National Walking Day.

The American Heart Association has sponsored the event every year since 2007 to encourage people to take steps to improve their health and develop the habit of walking.

There are several walking benefits.

But we’ll focus on two benefits of walking that directly impact the back:

  1. Walking regularly can help reduce chronic pain throughout the body – even your back. When we exercise the brain releases pain-inhibiting hormones called endorphins. These endorphins can reduce pain and improve the overall mood. Someone who relies on pain medications to manage their back pain could reduce their reliance on them by walking every day.
  2. Chronic pain can sap our motivation and functionality, making every day tasks difficult. Walking three to seven days a week for 30 to 40 minutes can make a huge difference. Tasks that were once difficult, such as bending over, reaching to get something out of a cabinet or getting out of bed in the morning, are now easier. Walking benefits are life altering. We just need to carve out some time in our day to hit the pavement.

Here are few tips to make a 30-minute stroll more enjoyable:

  • Where comfortable clothes
  • Comfortable sneakers also help
  • Walk with a friend
  • Engage your muscles before you start walking by stretching
  • Stay hydrated: drink plenty of water
  • Move your arms when you walk to burn more calories and move your muscles
  • Focus on good posture

Walking is a great way to get into and stay in shape, and it’s an activity you can begin right away. First, remember to make sure your doctor says it’s okay.