Warm and sultry weather can discourage us from activity and if we are not lucky enough to afford a well-deserved holiday at the seaside and take long swims, the risk is that summer will become the perfect excuse to remain inactive. For running, playing tennis or soccer is too hot. The ideal activity on holiday is walking, ideal for combining rest and movement. We talk about its incredibly beneficial effects with Dr. Piero Volpi, Head of Knee Orthopedics and Sports Traumatology at Humanitas.
A matter of pace
Fast and sustained pace: in order to have real benefits on our health and to put in place a real muscle stimulation, the walk must be energetic and not go below a certain pace. The latter is in fact the determining factor in transforming a simple walk into a real physical activity.
An activity suitable for everyone
“Walking is only to a limited extent tiring, does not stress the ankles and joints and sets in motion both the musculoskeletal system and the respiratory and cardiovascular ones,” said Dr. Volpi, explaining that this type of exercise is useful to keep in shape at all ages and physical conditions without any particular risk. Walking is ideal for older people and overweight people and can be done anywhere.
“In the city, as in the mountains and the sea, there is always a path to take our walk. If you stay in the city, it is preferable to walk in a park, away from polluted areas and on soft ground – continued the specialist – Especially in summer it is better to walk in the early morning or late afternoon. It is not advisable to prefer walking after dinner and this applies to all physical activities, which should not be carried out too close to bedtime. At sea, the ideal place remains the beach, because they develop the proprioception of the foot and strengthen the muscles of the ankle.
The importance of suitable shoes
“In any case, what is fundamental, and that too often is forgotten, is that we need shoes suitable for walking – concluded Volpi: bandits flip flops and sandals, the ideal are shoes that cover the whole foot, sports or leisure, but soft and cushioned because the stresses of the ground can adversely affect the knees and hips.
Once you’ve got your ideal shoes, there’s nothing to stop us making walking a daily ritual. Specialists recommend doing it for at least 30 minutes a day, every day, and summer is the ideal time to take up this good habit.