Pole Power For Parkinson’s

We are seeing some amazing changes! Our Well Being Group have been using a specialised Nordic Walking pole, The Activator Poles,  and adapted technique so that they can enjoy the full benefits of fresh air fitness with the Nordic walking benefits.


Since September we have been delivering a Pole walking for Fitness program in South Hill, Bracknell, to the Parkinson’s Uk Bracknell group.

The Activator Poles have a unique hand-grip which enables the user to stabilise their arm through the underside of the hand pushing down on the “handle ledge”,  providing a little more stability than standard walking poles as well as promoting a more neutral wrist posture.
Features include:
  • Ergonomic Coregrip to keep wrist in neutral position to prevent strain.
  • Coregrip with strong Ledge – effective for core strengthening, off-loading & balance.
  • 3 anti-vibration features to minimize stress on joints.
  • Bell shape tip – to keep pole in upright position
  • Boot shape tip – to propel you forward and positions pole on a diagonal.
The core muscles enjoy a great strengthening workout with every step taken engaging the poles with the correct technique, pushing through the specially adapted handle. A stronger core enables better balance and posture.
There is a sense of propulsion and lift which gives a lightness through the body.
By adding poles, you are engaging active participation of the upper body, which then benefits the body and there aren’t many other activities or exercises that can do that. You are working out the WHOLE body whilst on the hoof! The body is designed to keep moving as it improves muscle strength, bone density and keeps weight safely down.

This video shows how versatile our program is with our members.
The combination of using the Poles with regular walking is likened to the movement of a four wheel vehicle. While regular walking entails the use of the legs but keeps the upper body largely under exercised, Nordic walking ensures the active use of all the four limbs of the body. The active use of the whole body results in many health benefits like:-
  1. Improved balance for the body
  2. Increased heart rate
  3. Better vascular health
  4. Better oxygen intake
  5. Benefits to the hip, knee and ankle joints.
  6. Higher Bone density.
All these benefits combined boost the confidence and positive well being to support those with Parkinson’s. The body feels stronger and that just raises the smiles and outlook.
In addition to the health benefits of walking with Poles we are now seeing improved fitness, stability, coordination and balance. If only we had done a “Before Video” when our lovely members first started back in September.

This video shows the difference poles made for Bill and Gill. Gill moves more from side to side and Bill has a tendency to stoop, almost toppling forward. This was more pronounced in September.

Janine Lewis, of 3JFitness, is one of the qualified Nordic Walking UK Instructors with accredited Well Being training in Activator Poles. We work alongside Physiotherapists and medical professionals who would like to provide a prescriptive or walking program to help their patients improve both physically, with a supportive mobility and strength fitness exercise, and mentally with the well being aspects of exercise and being outside in the fresh air.

   “Pole Power for fresh air fitness”

Nordic Walking UK are the only UK supplier for the Urban Pole Activator and Urban Pole 300 poles. They also provide full training for professionals alongside their local NWUK Well Being Instructor.
Martin Christie introduced Nordic walking into the UK in 2003, formed Nordic Walking UK (NWUK) and developed the country’s first instructor training courses.
With growing evidence, particularly from Europe and Canada, around Nordic walking and other walking-based exercise concepts specifically for people with Parkinson’s and other neurological conditions, NWUK has developed its training programmes both within and beyond Nordic walking.
Professional support information:
In developing the NWUK education and rehab programmes, Martin Christie, NWUK Director, brings together experienced medical professionals and educators to continually develop this field. He trains rehab professionals within the fields of neuro, falls services, cancer rehab and MSK.
Martin provides an interactive presentation and workshop, exploring the claims of instantly improved posture and rapidly enhanced confidence in movement when walking with poles.
Experience the potential benefits of Activator pole walking for people with Parkinson’s and other neurological conditions.
  • Have a clearer understanding of the clinical arguments for using Activator poles as part of an exercise or rehab programme for neurological conditions.
  • Provide basic advice to clients on most effective use of poles to improve posture, gait and walking tolerance for neurological conditions.
  • Provide basic advice on the different types of walking poles available on the market.
Recommended by leading surgeons, physicians and therapists, Activator Poles were designed specifically for rehab and long term conditions by an occupational therapist. This pole offers strengthening, stability and off-loading with your safety in mind.
Activator Poles promote active living and over 182 independent studies on PubMed have found walking poles improve strength, balance, posture, walking tolerance & speed and reduce impact off knee joints.
For more details contact Martin Christie at NWUK or chat with Janine.