What Are the Benefits of Walking?

Reviewed on 6/30/2021

There are many health benefits of walking as exercise. These include increased cardiovascular fitness, increased lung fitness, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, stronger bones, improved balance, reduced body fat, lower body mass index (BMI), increased muscle strength and endurance, lower fasting blood sugar (glucose), better memory and cognitive function, lower stress, improved mood, reduced risk of serious medical conditions, and longer life.
There are many health benefits of walking as a form of exercise. These include increased cardiovascular fitness, increased lung fitness, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, stronger bones, improved balance, reduced body fat, lower body mass index (BMI), increased muscle strength and endurance, lower fasting blood sugar (glucose), better memory and cognitive function, lower stress, improved mood, reduced risk of serious medical conditions, and longer life.

Walking is a wonderful way to maintain fitness and health. It is low impact, does not require any specialized equipment or training, it can be done at your own pace, and any time of day. It’s a great form of exercise for anyone, of any age, even those who are elderly or overweight

Walking is considered a weight-bearing exercise, because you carry your own weight as you walk. 

Benefits of walking are numerous and include:

Even a 30-minute brisk walk several days a week can provide health benefits. ‘Brisk’ means you can talk but not sing, and you may be breathing a little heavier than usual. 

Tips to get more out of every walk include:

  • Walk whenever you can
    • Use a fitness tracker and aim for at least 10,000 steps each day
  • Walk a little faster
  • Take walk breaks throughout the day
  • Use high-intensity interval training (HIIT)
    • Instead of walking at a moderate pace for 30 minutes straight, try alternating between 30-second to 1-minute bursts of faster walking, followed by 1 to 2 minutes of a slower walking recovery
  • Walk uphill
  • Walking usually does not pose a health risk, but always check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program, especially if you have an existing medical condition.

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

Reviewed on 6/30/2021
References
https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/walking-for-good-health

https://www.consumerreports.org/exercise-fitness/benefits-of-walking/