5 WAYS TO LEARN WHILE WALKING IN THE FRESH AIR…

Getting out into the fresh air at the moment is very important to us all but if your nearest walk is not very exciting then you could learn while you walk.

You could listen to endless Podcasts. Good Housekeeping has 30 Best Podcasts for 2020 to listen to now.

You could learn a language. Lingualift has a list of the top 10 best language learning apps.

You could learn all about the birds and bees flying around at the moment. Dr. Hilary said this morning how you can here lots more bird song in the capital now the roads are so quiet. Hobby Help has listed the top 5 best Bird Watching Apps for 2020.

You could learn all about the flowers, trees and the leaves you pass on the road. The Telegraph has a list of the 10 best apps to identify unknown plants and flowers and Techigem has the 10 Best Plant Identification Apps for 2020.

If you just simply want to walk for health and some fresh air and don’t own a Fitbit then why not download an app and keep your phone in your pocket so it can register how many steps you have taken. I get a real buzz from knowing how many steps I’ve done as I know it’s so important for your health. Good Housekeeping have a list of the 10 best Step Counter Apps.

Nature is all around us, even if you live on busy streets or in cities. If you stuck in an apartment you could still take up bird watching, just zoom in your camera and take a picture of the bird then find out what it is from one of the apps. Being outside is very important and no matter how small your garden if you cannot get out into the streets then you could enjoy any off this list just walking around your garden.

We all want to get through this terrible ordeal we are now in ‘fit not fat.‘ There is also a brilliant book called Every Day Nature by Andy Beer (National Trust Book) which encourages you to find beauty in the everyday and forge a powerful connection with the nature than can be found on your doorstep.

REVIEW ON JOYA SHOES – BLISS FOR YOUR BACK…

I was given the opportunity to try a pair of Joya Shoes which they explain ‘support the natural movement process and encourage active walking. Joya shoes also promote healthy posture, which provides relief to the back and joints and can also reduce and prevent back and joint pain.’

As a chronic back pain sufferer walking out in the open is something I only really enjoyed occasionally when I was having a good day with my back. My biggest problem was deciding how far I could walk on any particular day so I was very excited to see if these shoes would make any difference.

The first impression when I put the shoes on was how high and supported I felt. It felt a bit like walking on air. The soft and springing material of the Joya sole transforms a hard and flat floor into a soft, elastic surface.

This, they say ‘increasingly activates small support and stability muscles again, which can remove stress from the joints and the spinal column. Plus, “micro movements” support the activity of the foot, calf, and leg muscles, which enable active walking and standing.’

Well, I have to say I am more than impressed with these shoes. The last few weeks have been an ideal time for me to see how far I could walk while in isolation. We are lucky enough to have lots of walks on The South Downs on our doorstep and the dry weather over the last couple of weeks has meant it safer to walk off-piste.

When my daughter first saw me in a pair of Joya shoes she thought I looked ‘very trendy’, which at the end of the day is also important to us women. Their shoes most definitely do what they say and relieve the back pain and cushions the feet and support healthy walking. Joya Shoes website explains in great detail about how these shoes work with a video and all about the Optimal pressure distribution, Joya ensures smooth rolling movement and optimum pressure distribution. This prevents pressure spikes in heel and forefoot. Joya footwear enables natural movement and encourages active walking.

At the moment one of their suppliers ShoeMed has an offer of 15% discount on full RRP to everyone Code: HURRY15. The code is valid until the end of the month. I wouldn’t hesitate to give these shoes a try if you get back pain during or after walking.

HOW TO EXERCISE IF ISOLATED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS COVID-19…

We all know that one of the best way to prevent lower back pain is to exercise regularly and engage in strength training so that your core and back muscles are strong.

A regular stretching program to keep you limber will help too.However, if you already have back pain, contrary to popular belief, you still can and should start exercising to strengthen your body. You just need to take it slower and easier… but you need to exercise.In most cases, it’s the lower back that will hurt.

It’s also important to get approval from your doctor before engaging in any exercise routine when you’re suffering from a bad back, but putting that aside we all need to keep active during this isolation period.

If you are unable to take your regular walk then try and set aside an hour each day to do some form of exercise. If you can only manage walking then that’s fine just walk around the house. Count your steps to pass the time by or put some music on but try to dedicate some time to do this every day. It’s important for every part of your body to walk as much as you can.

If you think you can manage more than a walk then check out these six full body stretching exercises from the Real Simple website. Take time to focus on what flexibility may feel like. Stretching is an important part of fitness: It can improve your range of motion, increase circulation, and calm your mind—which may help fend off injuries and illness, as well as bring on a better night’s sleep. To limber up, try the following quick head-to-toe routine created by Dana Slamp, a senior yoga instructor at Pure Yoga, in New York City. Do the complete series once daily. Deepen each stretch with every exhalation, and stop if you feel any strain or pain.

The NHS has these links to home exercises –

Burn calories, lose weight and feel great with our 10-minute home workout routines:

Or, you could follow this YouTube video. Whatever way you decide even if it is just a few stretches twice a day every little bit of time you spend will be beneficial to your health.

WALKING TO IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH AND BACK PAIN …

Walking for Life encourages people to get active by arranging health walks up and down the country for all levels of fitness.Walking will improve stamina, help keep weight gain at bay and reduce your risk of major diseases. 20 minutes of walking can burn up 100 calories.

It is also beneficial for SAD sufferers who feel low and lathargic due to the lack of sunlight in the winter months.

Walking for life was set up in 2000 and now has over 600 local schemes with 66,000 regular walkers nationwide. To find the health walk schemes closest to you, just enter your postcode or place name in the search box on the site or see what’s on offer in your part of the country by clicking on your local region on the map.

You’ll then find all the information you need to either join the group for one of their regular walks or contact your local scheme coordinator to find out more.

Walk4Life is another great site with lots of information. The Walk4Life website is 6 years old and although not the prettiest of sites they think it is still a really useful tool to use to plan a walk .

Funding for the website from the Department of Health ended 4 years ago. Since then Walk Unlimited have been self-financing the project; sadly, they can’t afford to do this forever. In addition to hosting and maintaining the site they pay Ordnance Survey for every map view. With over 50,000 visits a month the running costs are high.

They have introduced a subscription fee of £5.00 for 12 months. The £5 a year gives you unlimited access to all Ordnance Survey maps at the very useful zoom levels of 25K and 50K. Using these base maps you can create and save your own walks by plotting the line of the route.  

You can view 1000’s of other walk routes on OS maps created by other members of the site and you can also log and track your walking activity or create your own walking group with its own administration area and create walking challenges.

MONTHLY BACK PAIN TIPS FROM BACK PAIN BLOG UK.COM …JULY

This month’s back pain tips include –

Start walking. Walking is one of the best exercises you can do to help to relieve back pain. A recent study found that a group of low back pain patients who did 3 hours brisk walking per week had considerably less pain and distress than a group who were given specific low back exercises.

Walking helps exercise many the muscles in the Musco skeletal system, which in turn help provide support to the spine. I can honestly say that my endorphins always kick in if I manage to get out for a walk.

If you drive, do pay attention to how you get in and out of the car. Sit down facing the door and swing both legs into the car together. Getting out is the reverse. It may look cumbersome but many a bad back is triggered by getting in or out of the car the wrong way. Ensure if you are driving any distance that you take regular breaks and have a walk around.