By Gill Stewart at
CO – ORDINATION – Top Tips
We’ve all had them! The one client who despite us never mentioning which leg swings in conjunction with which arm and trying to encourage natural walking …..will lose all natural rhythm as soon as they try to use their poles.
So how do we deal with it?
Dawn Mclean – Nordic Walking UK Tutor who has her own lively group in Preston and also supports the amazing Stepping out group, favours the following ‘fixes’
” A very easy first fix is to instruct to bring both arms into the sides and carry on walking. Tell them to relax and then to start to swing the arms then when they are walking with arms and legs in opposition, just say start to plant your poles – viola!
This may need a couple of repeats but more often than not, it works a treat.
A good second fix would be to start from a stopped position. Stand at the side of your client and do exactly what they do. Tell them to put one foot forward (let them choose and avoid lefts and rights, unnecessary complication here). Motion/point to show them which arm to put in front so you are both in a ready to walk position with fingers curled arms lengthened etc. Say ready and walk or go, whatever words you prefer and off you go.
A well used third fix (and this works well alongside the second fix) is to then sing a tune (you or them out loud or them in their head, whichever works best for them) singing in time with the pole plants to help keep rhythm.
Suggestion four would be to get them to focus on something else entirely as this may also do the trick, take the mind off the problem and the body can then relax into it.
More often than not, the majority of people tend to settle into coordinated Nordic Walkers. However, for those individuals who may continue to struggle, the main thing is that they are having fun exercising in the great outdoors so if not always perfect, does it really matter??
Great advice Dawn – we’ve added a couple more tips from the Instructors at HQ below too :-
Whatever you do – stay chilled and allow client to feel that it’s totally natural to over think things and that their body will naturally fall into a natural action once they allow it too!
Share your tips with other Instructors by commenting below and let us know which song you sing!!!!.