Pole Walking ...Is it just a passing fad?
Reference:Fritschi JO, et al The effects of pole walking on health in adults: A systematic review. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2012 Jun 27.
Here is my prediction; pole walking is going to be very popular within the next 10 years. I know in BC it has been trendy for a while now, but the rest of Canada has not quite jumped on board yet. Although pole walking is said to have officially started in Finland in 1997, it was practiced long before that in Scandinavian countries to train for cross-country skiing during the off-season.
So is pole walking of any benefit or is it just a passing fad and a waste of time and money spent on poles?
(This is me being trendy with my poles and 5 finger shoes …all I?m missing now is a LuLu Lemon outfit!)
This 2012 systematic review summarized 13 studies on the topic and concluded that pole walking had some beneficial effects on both physical and psychosocial health in adults with and without clinical conditions. (It?s often a social activity with a partner or a group!)
I tried pole walking for the first time a month ago, and I will say it was a truly enjoyable experience so I bought two pairs of poles, one for myself and one for my wife. Now the debate on which poles are the best, …with straps? Without straps? From a fancy store for $95? Or from Canadian Tire for $40?
As soon as I have a study, I?ll give you my opinion, but for now I don?t know. I just strongly recommend trying any form of pole walking for 1 hour …suggest it especially to your patients with hip OA, knee OA, back pain, SI pain etc.
More on this topic in my future reports.
Posted on: July 05, 2012
Categories: Relevant Physical Therapy Articles