"Daily exercise keeps us fit; people of all ages can do it". Exercise for half an hour a day brings great benefits to our health.
Exercises can generally be divided into two main categories: aerobic and anaerobic. Only aerobic exercise can control weight as well as strengthen the functions of the heart and lungs. Easy to master and good for our health, walking is an aerobic exercise that can be done at any time. QualiWalk refers to walking exercise performed with correct posture and in proper amount. It is perhaps the safest and most effective aerobic exercise that enables us to enjoy a healthy life.
- The equipment is simple, i.e. just a pair of shoes to protect the feet is enough. Walking exercise is also safe and does not require any special techniques.
- Can be done at any place.
- Walking with your friends and relatives helps foster good relationships.
- Strengthen the bones, muscles and joints and help prevent osteoporosis.
- Reduce body fat and cholesterol; lower the blood pressure. Reduce the risk of getting heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes, especially effective for the diabetic group.
- Enhance blood circulation; strength the functions of the heart and lungs.
- Burn calories, thus help maintain a healthy body weight.
- Especially effective in alleviating pressure, keeping the mind clear and improving memory.
- Maintain body fitness and physical vigour of the elderly. Improve body balance and flexibility.
- Improve the health conditions of pregnant and postnatal women.
- A strong physique helps boost one's confidence.
In the following cases, you should consult your doctor before starting your exercise plans:
- Suffering from chronic diseases such as heart or respiratory disease.
- Feeling chest pain or discomfort during or after exercise.
- Be prone to losing consciousness due to dizziness.
- Breathlessness occurs with only mild exercise.
- If you are of middle-age or over, and did no exercise before but are planning to do more vigorous exercise.
- Having bone or joint problems such as inflammation, aching or stiffness of joints.
- Wear comfortable sportswear and walking shoes. The shoes should be of the right size so that they can protect and stabilize your feet during the walk.
- The toe cap of the shoes should be wide and the heel counter snugly fit
- The shoes' inner part should provide proper support and protection
- The heel should be properly fixed to provide enough protection
- The sole should be non-slippery and the body of the shoes soft
- Put on your socks
- Drink a glass of water before and after the walk
- Select safe route, confirm the distance of the walk and number of laps
- Do warm-up and stretching exercise before you start the walk
- If feeling unwell during the course of the test, stop and tell your friends for safety sake
- To reduce the risk of heat-stroke in hot weather, avoid long and strenuous walking
- Correct Posture
- Keep your body upright as far as possible, even when going upslope or downslope
- Raise your head and relax your shoulders
- Start your step by moving forward your knee, then your calf and heel, just like normal walking posture
- Bend your elbows with your hands relaxed
- Correct Technique
- Relax and not to tense your muscles
- Walk at a natural pace, with strides larger than usual
- Swing your arms in rhythm with the moment of your lower body
- Do cool down exercise after the walk
- No need to add weight on arms or heels in general
- Correct pace
- Try a shorter distance at the beginning, then add up gradually
- The breathing and heart rates should increase slowly. Suitable pace means the speed will increase the breathing rate yet you are still able to speak. Keep your breathing natural, and adjust it with different pace.
- If you want to increase the intensity of walking, simply walk with rapid and big strides provided that your posture, breathing and the symmetry of movement will not be affected in any way
- Swing your arms in rhythm with the moment of your lower body and increase the speed gradually. The faster you walk, the greater the angle of the elbow should be, so as to speed up the arm swing. (If you feel difficulty in breathing, slow down and respect your limits.)
- At first, choose an even road for walking exercise.
In the QualiWalk training class held by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD), the instructors will conduct a test on participants' cardiopulmonary functions so that participants may have a better understanding of their physical condition. The testing method is as follow:
- Select a 1.6km QualiWalk trail
- Warm up first. Count the time as you start walking. Walk at the fastest and steadiest pace to finish the trail
- As soon as you reach the end of the trail, record the time for the whole walk
- Then count your pulse rate for 15 seconds. Multiple the number by 4 to find out your heart rate per minute.
- Refer to the fitness level chart to check your physical fitness