When I walked into town this morning, I couldn't help but notice just how many people were using walking poles to help them negotiate the snow-packed pavements of Berry Lane. Very sensible. I bought a pair of walking poles about three months ago after resisting them for years. They really do make a real difference. If you are carrying a rucksack, the poles help spread the load and reduce the weight put on a person's hip, knee and ankle joints.
A word of warning, though. Don't over do it to begin with. I decided to test drive mine by using them to walk out from Longridge up the long slow incline past the Golf Club to Jeffrey Hill. I flew like a rocket at unbelievable speed and got there in no time at all. Trouble was, I hadn't realised that I was expending all of my energy in getting there. End result? I found the return journey very hard work, even though it was downhill virtually all the way. Now I pace myself and get myself there and back without too much effort.
Taking things to the next level, some people joing nordic walking classes. Nordic walking is a really good way of getting fit. Click here to find out more. I know Alston Hall often runs courses (the next is in March).