Walking with your hands. This is the engine of Nordic walking! – The Nordic walking technique is, in itself, straightforward to acquire.
However, in the details, you will have a significant margin of progress.
The placement of the hands-on handle of the stick is an essential component!
As it is not necessarily very natural, a little concentration and especially a lot of practice will be necessary for the gesture to become fluid and effective.
Why is this important?
The goal of Nordic walking aims is to propel you forward optimally while maintaining good body balance.
You can’t achieve this without precise control of your hands.
Indeed, it is she who will give the impetus to the stick then make it return to the front of your body to transplant it back to the ground.
Controlling this action is essential because it gives the movement “fuel” and helps to give rhythm.
If you don’t do it correctly, you will compensate elsewhere in your body, creating tension in the elbow, shoulders or neck more often than not.
But it mainly disrupts your general technique.
Walking With Your Hands – The basic technique:
There are two words to remember: tighten/release
If you go on dates with me, you will hear this reminder often!
1- Hold your handle like when you shake someone’s hand: a firm and frank grip.
Be careful, however, to keep the tip of the stick back
Also, be careful not to paralyze the forearms
2- Then exert a slight downward pressure on your gauntlet (it’s there for that!). Begin to release some tension in your fingers.
3- when you reach the end of the course (hand behind the pelvis), it should be completely relaxed and accompany the stick far behind you.
4- finally, take the handle of your pole vigorously to bring it forward to continue the cycle.
The stick may bounce a little on the ground when you are a beginner. Don’t worry; it will gradually fade into a smooth gesture without significant impact with practice.
The most advanced technique:
When you have the above technique well, the two keywords “squeeze/release” become “catch/throw” when you master the movement and store confidence.
To go even further, you can play on different stick release speeds and modify the pressure on the grip.
In short: experiment as much as possible!
To finish on the subject, whether in beginner or advanced mode, one way to properly control the hand’s position on the stick is to walk with a single post, over 100 meters.
There will allow you to focus on one side only. And important to know you will have better control of your “non-dominant” hand (the hand you don’t use to write).
Another exercise is to walk with both sticks planted at the same time. In this way, both hands are doing the same thing, which allows, again, a better concentration on the program to become fair and balanced.
Finally, an excellent Nordic walking instructor will, of course, be qualified to help you progress on this essential technique!