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Osteoporisis NZ: Hey, where's the snow?

14 October, 2008

Hey, where's the snow?

Don't be alarmed if you see groups of people who look like they're walking on snow in Frank Kitts Park on Monday (October 20).

No, winter hasn't done a sudden u-turn. They'll all be supporters of Osteoporosis Awareness Week and they will be Nordic Walking.

Nordic Walking is adapted from Nordic Skiing and its proponents say it gives you a total body workout. And that makes it an ideal exercise for preventing osteoporosis or bone disease.

Osteoporosis New Zealand and Nordic Walking Academy are organising the Nordic Walk in Wellington's waterfront park to highlight its fitness benefits at the start of Osteoporosis Week.

Julia Gallagher, executive director Osteoporosis New Zealand encourages people to come and take a look and have a go.

"Nordic Walking strengthens the bones of the lower and upper body. This helps combat the effect of osteoporosis because the load taken through the arms when using the poles means that the bones in the upper lower body are strengthened. It also has the advantage that the poles assist with balance and therefore reduce the risk of falling."

Nordic Walking is a technique first developed in the 1930s by Finnish cross-country skiers for summer training and became a recreational activity in the early 1980s.

It is now one of the fastest growing fitness sports. Sandro Roth and Andras Szucs of the Nordic Walking Academy are promoting the sport throughout New Zealand, teaching the correct techniques so that participants get the most benefit.

Andras is based in Wellington and says Nordic Walking has been shown to have many health benefits over normal walking.

"Nordic Walking is suitable for all age groups and abilities. People who have physical limitations find Nordic Walking enables them to exercise at a higher intensity compared to other activities."


Monday 20th October: Frank Kitts Park.

When: Arrive at 12.10pm for a 12.20pm start.

How long: 40minutes

What to wear: Walking shoes and comfortable clothing - poles provided!


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