Sure, walking with ski poles and trekking poles can prove beneficial, but real Nordic Walking Poles that are sized correctly can help to radically reduce the stress to the weight bearing joints (knees, hips and back) and at the same time improve balance and stability. Nordic Walking poles can also help to burn 20% - 40% more calories than regular walking.
After hosting numerous Nordic Walking in-service programs for doctors and PT’s, SKIWALKING.COM and the American Nordic Walking System has had the opportunity to introduce Nordic Walking to hospitals, physical therapy locations and sports med facilities all across the USA. And in all of the inservice programs we have utilized user-friendly one-piece poles sized correctly to each participant's height. These durable one-piece poles are safer, lighter and much more durable than cheap twist-lock and flip-lock adjustable length/telescoping/collapsible poles from China.
A recent Nordic Walking/Sports Med article was posted at: http://www.sportmedbc.com/SportMedBlog/?p=630
Nordic Walking’s winning combination of improved posture, a unique 4-Wheel-Drive type action and shock absorbing benefits - helping many individuals to walk comfortably again. Nordic Walking Poles are helping individuals with balance issues, knee issues or new knees, hip issues or new hips, back issues (including those with rods in their back), weight issues, multiple sclerosis (MS), parkinson's (PD), neuropathy, arthritis, bursitis, scoliosis, lumbar stenosis, fibromyalgia, post polio, osteoporosis, stroke recovery, cancer recovery and other limitations to walking. Nordic Walking poles are helping thousands of Americans get off the couch, successfully get outside, start walking safely and effectively launch much needed walking campaigns.
Skiers use one-piece poles that are sized correctly. And as a ski coach that makes sense to me. Seniors and individual's with balance issues should especially avoid cheap collapsible poles. Don't get scammed by cheap twist-lock and/or flip-lock poles from China.
Walking with poles is the best!