Frequently Asked Questions
Is there a difference in walking poles?
Yes, poles are made out of different materials, some are adjustable, and others are fixed length. My recommendation is to start off with the Foot Solutions adjustable walking poles, they are very reasonably priced and a great starter set of poles.
Should I see a doctor before starting my Balance Walking program?
Certainly if you have any medical issues, are overweight or out of shape. I would recommend checking with your doctor to make sure there are no issues or concerns. Also start off the program with common sense, this is not a race – it is a lifestyle change.
Do you prefer fixed or variable length poles?
To start out with I always prefer variable length poles. They travel well and allow you to start out with an easier stride and you can adjust length as you improve. Terrain and surface that you normally walk on will also be a factor. Once you are hooked I would then invest in a higher level fixed length pole.
Do I need special shoes?
You certainly should make sure your shoes fit you properly other than that any basic walking or running shoe will be fine for starting the program. If you want to raise the bar to the next level and get the best possible work out I would then look into a pair of Chung Shi Rock or Roll shoes. The most aggressive would be the 20º Chung Shi Balance shoe.
I am really overweight; can I start Balance Walking before I lose any weight?
Absolutely – you need to embrace the complete program. You will notice substantial changes in how you look and feel. Take some pictures and keep us posted with your progress. Remember this is a life style change; steady reasonable progress is the key.
How old do you have to be to start Balance Walking?
We do children’s reach out programs all the time and they love it. If they are old enough to walk get them into the program and make it a family tradition instead of TV or their computer hand-held games. I have an 8 year old at home; she started Balance Walking with me when she was six.
I have bad knees and walk with a cane, can I still Balance Walk?
Absolutely, the use of two poles will increase your balance and feeling of security. We have a number of Balance Walkers who have thrown their canes away and now use their Balance Walking poles for everything. I have arthritis in both knees and I Balance Walk every day.
Can Balance Walking help me lose weight?
Balance Walking is a lifestyle change, if you follow the simple program I promise you it will change your life and you will be happy with the results. Weight loss is a side benefit of the program, it will happen but the real reason for Balance Walking is to re-energize your life and change the way you look at feel.
I am older and have fallen a number of times, can this program help me?
Actually at many retirement centers and events we focus on this subject. Balance Walking will improve your sense of balance, tone your muscles, and improve your reaction time. The answer to this question is absolutely yes if this is a physical issue. We can help you, falling is a serious issue for the elderly that leads to other complications. Do not wait to get into a program.
Please feel free to ask the experts panel on Balance Walking and any foot issues. We will respond quickly and enjoy talking to everyone and sharing ideas.
Also please visit our blog to keep up on what is going on and to share experiences.
Ray Margiano, PhD
Founder of Balance Walking