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Need waterproof overtrousers? Here's three of the best

We needed waterproof overtrousers this morning and very few of us had them.  I'm not surprised.  The recent beautiful weather has lulled us into a false sense of security. 

The key with overtrousers is that they are light and breathable.  You do not want to end up with sweaty legs or spoil your walk with overtrousers that are heavy and rigid.  Here are my three choices:

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Best foot forward - what shoes to wear for Nordic walking

The grass is getting wetter and my feet are getting soggy!  Annoyingly my gore-tex walking shoes are no longer waterproof (I am to blame – I have not been looking after them properly).  I need some new ones.  If you are looking to buy, here are some top tips.


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Three glorious walks

This Indian summer has prompted me to explore a few walks near Bristol that have been on my ‘to do’ list. I walked them with my son, who is on the cusp of leaving home for university. What gems they turned out to be.


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A coastal walk in Pembrokeshire

We were walking the coastal path in Pembrokeshire in 2007 when we saw the small handwritten notice tied to Trefalen Farm gate; Cottage for long term rent.  Within a month we had become the new tenants of Trefalen Cottage and we have divided our time between the (very small!) former out house and Bristol ever since.  For seven years I have enjoyed scrambling and walking over much of the nearby coast ; and now I have my Nordic walking poles to add to the fun.This is an account of a walk I did on the recent bank holiday.

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Why Nordic walking is the best exercise at any age

Peta Bee’s recent article in The Times endorsing walking as the best exercise both pleased and frustrated me!

I shouldn’t be ungrateful.  As a fitness professional whose business is all about walking, it is great to see a double page spread in a popular broadsheet extolling its benefits.  I just wish Nordic walking was given a higher profile.

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The Blackberrying Season

Blackberries always signal to me the slow drift of summer towards autumn. The light mellows, the evenings gradually draw in and I start my month-long hand-scratching obsession with blackberrying. 

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Exercise your brain and improve your memory by Nordic walking

Well, well.  We all know that Nordic working works your arms, legs, waist and butt, but did you know it also exercises your brain?!

Research suggests that the unilateral squeezing of your left and right hand stimulates brain activity in the opposite hemisphere of your brain.  This can improve memory, memory recall and creativity.

The participants in the studies were asked to squeeze a ball. With Nordic walking you squeeze and release the pole handle, but the basic principle is the same.

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Don't stop at the top!

We had an impressive Nordic walk yesterday (Saturday) to the Observatory and back.  Everyone was on fine form and the 4.2km was easily achieved within the hour.  This surprised quite a few people who, when they first started Nordic walking, would have struggled with this distance. It prompted a discussion about fitness which I thought I’d share with you.

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Nordic Walking Challenge Race

Yesterday was a bit of a red letter day for us Nordic walkers.  It saw the first ever UK Nordic walking race and, what's more, it was held here in Bristol in our very own Ashton Court.

Nordic walking racing is a well-known competitive sport across Europe and in Japan. Poland has one of the most active Nordic walking race series.  They run a Polish Nordic Walking Cup competition which comprises 7 races over the summer months.  Like ours, they compete over three distances - 5km, 10km and 20km - but they have 8 different age categories. 

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Speed Nordic Walking

We have just had a great speed Nordic walking workshop and I promised those attending that I’d write a summary of the points I raised for them. So here it is - for you to share as well.

Posture - the foundation
If you don’t get your posture right you will not be able to Nordic walk fast for long, or just plain walk for long frankly, without your back or neck taking a hammering. So what to do? Remember these key points:

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Registered Excercise ProfessionalsInternational Nordic Walking FederationBritish Nordic WalkingNordic Walking UKBristol Life Awards Winner