They say a dog is man’s best friend. Owning a dog brings you companionship, improves your mood and causes you to exercise more. Taking your dog for a walk, and walking in general, is good for you. Let’s explore some of the benefits walking brings.

It’s good for heart health, boosts your mood, helps maintain a healthy weight, but it also helps keep your muscles and joints strong and healthy. You’re less susceptible to injury and reduce your risk of osteoporosis or other bone-density related conditions when you have strong and healthy muscles and joints.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) recommends incorporating at least 30 minutes of walking each day for five days a week to see the benefits of walking for your muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons and joints.

Benefits of walking for Bone Health include:

• Easy and gentle on joints
• Builds and strengthens muscles
• Helps maintain bone mass
• Slows the development of arthritis
• Reduces risk of osteoporosis
• Increases joint flexibility and range of motion
• Aids in joint fluid circulation, which provides essential oxygen and nutrients
• Reduces risk of hip fracture
• Lowers the likelihood of musculoskeletal injuries
• Increases spinal stability

Getting Started

To get started, give yourself about five minutes walking at a casual pace as a warm-up. Start to increase your walking pace but keep good posture and a comfortable stride. Point your toes forward and your weight should be distributed evenly. The AAOS recommends a gradual approach to begin a walking program.

Stay Hydrated

Like with any exercise, it’s important to stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water when walking to avoid dehydration, fatigue, and help lubricate joints.
Before beginning any new exercise routing, we recommend you speak with your physician.

Mall Movers

Are you interested in walking more? OSMS is proud to sponsor Mall Movers, a free mall walking program designed for Bay Park Square Mall. Find out more by visiting the Mall Office, located in the ShopKo wing.