Did you know that your fast pace can prolong your life? After conducting a study on more than 30,000 people aged +65, scientists revealed that those who walk faster, live way longer.
The walking process is complicated in a fascinating way. Both our skeletal and nervous system work hard to produce a step, calculate distances, and adjust balance according to the surface.
All of these are so automatic that we don’t even notice anything at all. Moreover, the way we walk can reveal potential lurking health problems that may require medical attention.
#7 – Short steps
Short steps can indicate issues with hips or knees. Normally, your knee should straighten whenever you make a step forward. So if you’re experiencing difficulty to straighten your leg, it can be a sign of joint problems.
It’s recommended to consult a doctor to examine your knee and hip joints. Don’t wait for too long before visiting a doctor. Otherwise, you may experience health complications in the form of back pain due to the pressure put on your lower back.
#6 – Limping
Limping can be an indicator of arthritis in the knee. An unsteady walk makes it impossible for the body to lean on one leg. This can sometimes cause a loss of balance, particularly if the knee gets “locked.” A locked knee can be extremely risky since it can “lock” unexpectedly causing the person to fall down and get hurt. If you’re having an unsteady walk, you should visit a doctor immediately.
#5 – Stiffness in hands
Stiff hands can be caused by back problems. When you take a step with our left leg, the torso muscles on the right side serve as stabilizers making you put your right hand forward. This mechanism works for every step you make.
In case you have a smaller amplitude of your arms’ swing, you may be having serious back issues, such as spinal disc herniation. If your hands feel stiff while walking, make sure to visit a neurologist or an orthopedist.
#4 – Foot drop
Foot drop can be a sign of muscle problems, neurological disorders, and multiple sclerosis. It’s when a person slaps their feet down instead of lifting the leg and gently putting the foot down. In most cases, this happens because of multiple sclerosis, back problems, a pinched nerve, or muscular dystrophy.
#3 – Leaning
Leaning can be caused by a head injury. A person can lean a bit when walking due to difficulty maintaining balance. It should be noted that alcohol isn’t always the reason behind leaning. It can also result from injury. Another thing you should watch for is dizziness after a head injury, especially when going up or down the stairs.
#2 – Snail’s speed
Depression is the biggest culprit when it comes to slow walking. When someone is depressed, they’ll start moving the head vertically, swinging upper trunk, making short slow steps, and moving their arms slowly while walking.
If you know a person who is depressed or feeling sad, you can walk along with them and encourage them to speed up. Amazingly, when we change our walking speed, we can change our mood as well.
#1 – Springing
A springing walk can indicate stiff calf muscles. People who ignore stretching after workouts or women who usually wear high heels could cause stiff calf muscles, which results in a springing walk. Stretching your muscles is very important, skip it and you can cause yourself an ankle or knee injury.
One more advice to keep your knees healthy: slightly bend your knees while walking down the stairs. This will reduce joint pressure.