Due to poling action and upper body engagement, Nordic walking (NW) has additional health benefits with respect to conventional walking. The aim of this study was to evaluate the differences in muscle activation and metabolic responses between NW, performed with the technique suggested by NW instructors, and with some modifications in the way to move upper limb and poles. Ten NW instructors volunteered to walk on a treadmill at 5.5 km•h-1 in five conditions: walking (W), Nordic walking (NW), NW with a weak poling action (NWweak), with straight-upper limbs moving the shoulders (NWshoulder) and with elbow flexion-extension pattern and shoulder freezed (NWelbow). Poling forces, body segments and poles movement, upper and lower body muscle activation, as well as metabolic parameters were measured.All modified NW techniques elicited lower muscular activation and metabolic responses with respect to the suggested NW technique (P < 0.05). All NW techniques elicited higher muscular activation and metabolic responses than W. All parameters observed with the NWweak were lower than NW. A decreased activation of shoulder extensor muscles and increased activation of anterior deltoid muscle were the main features of NWshoulder. Lower triceps brachii muscle activation and reduced propulsive poling action with respect to NW were seen for NWelbow, resulting also in shorter steps.Nordic walking instructors, sport technicians and practitioners should be aware that any deviation from the technique usually suggested might lead to lower benefits. However it is worth to note that any walking technique with poles elicits higher metabolic responses and muscular activation than walking.

Muscular and metabolic responses to different Nordic walking techniques, when style matters

Pellegrini, Barbara
;
Boccia, Gennaro;Zoppirolli, Chiara;Bortolan, Lorenzo;Schena, Federico
2018-01-01

Abstract

Due to poling action and upper body engagement, Nordic walking (NW) has additional health benefits with respect to conventional walking. The aim of this study was to evaluate the differences in muscle activation and metabolic responses between NW, performed with the technique suggested by NW instructors, and with some modifications in the way to move upper limb and poles. Ten NW instructors volunteered to walk on a treadmill at 5.5 km•h-1 in five conditions: walking (W), Nordic walking (NW), NW with a weak poling action (NWweak), with straight-upper limbs moving the shoulders (NWshoulder) and with elbow flexion-extension pattern and shoulder freezed (NWelbow). Poling forces, body segments and poles movement, upper and lower body muscle activation, as well as metabolic parameters were measured.All modified NW techniques elicited lower muscular activation and metabolic responses with respect to the suggested NW technique (P < 0.05). All NW techniques elicited higher muscular activation and metabolic responses than W. All parameters observed with the NWweak were lower than NW. A decreased activation of shoulder extensor muscles and increased activation of anterior deltoid muscle were the main features of NWshoulder. Lower triceps brachii muscle activation and reduced propulsive poling action with respect to NW were seen for NWelbow, resulting also in shorter steps.Nordic walking instructors, sport technicians and practitioners should be aware that any deviation from the technique usually suggested might lead to lower benefits. However it is worth to note that any walking technique with poles elicits higher metabolic responses and muscular activation than walking.
2018
Nordic walking; muscle activation; metabolic responses; modified NW techniques
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/978343
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