Q: What clothing and footwear should I wear for Nordic Walking?
A: You will need flexible soled trainers or walking shoes – ideally waterproof but this is not essential. Clothing needs to be suitable for the weather, something you feel comfortable moving in, and it is always a good idea to wear layers. In the winter months, a waterproof jacket, gloves and hats are a must. If walking after sunset, hi-viz jacket or a vest, and a head torch are advisable for safety.
Q: Do I need to bring my own poles?
A: No, poles are provided by the instructor for all the beginners’ courses and regular sessions. However, many people choose to buy their own poles after completing the course.
Q: Can I use trekking poles for Nordic Walking?
A: No. Trekking poles do not have the correct hand straps to allow you to gain the required forward propulsion. Trekking poles also generally do not have an angled rubber paw for use on hard surfaces.
Q: What else should I bring to class with me?
A: It is always a good idea to carry a water bottle, and of course any medication you may need, i.e. asthma inhalors. Some people carry their personal belongings in a rucksack and others opt for sports bum-bags. Handbags and across the body bags are best left at home as these will get in the way of the poles.
Q: Do I really have to attend a beginners’ course? Isn’t it just ‘walking with sticks’?
A: Attending a beginners’ course is a must as there is a lot more to Nordic Walking than meets the eye. It generally takes a number of sessions for people to become really familiar walking with the poles, but this depends on the individual. Some people learn the correct, safe and effective Nordic Walking technique in just a couple of sessions. If you cannot make the course dates, you can also book in for one-to-one sessions to suit your schedule.
Q: “Where’s the snow? Have you lost your skis? Are you in training for an Arctic expedition?”
A: Nordic Walking requires no snow or skis, but could actually be a great way to train for an Arctic expedition! Nordic Walking can be done anywhere; urban pavements & parks, rolling hills, up & down mountains, in a forest, on the beach – all you need is to learn the correct technique with a qualified instructor, a pair of poles and comfortable foot wear, and you are set!