Diabetes & Metabolic Studies

Nordic Walking may be appropriate for those with Diabetes, but care should be taken to:

  • consult with your  professional prior to starting a physical activity program
  • start slow if you aren’t currently walking, make sure to warm-up!
  • use appropriate footwear designed for walking
  • consult with a Nordic Walking instructor or physical therapist, especially if you have any symptoms of neuropathy, to determine the best walking technique for you

Nordic Walking can have beneficial effects on:

  • glucose levels
  • blood lipid levels
  • resting heart rate
  • blood pressure
  • exercise capacity
  • maximal oxygen consumption


Click on the links below to be taken to the abstracts.

Effects of Nordic Walking and Pilates exercise programs on blood glucose and lipid profile in overweight and obese postmenopausal women in an experimental, nonrandomized, open-label, prospective controlled trial.

Cardiometabolic effects of physical exercise depend on its intensity, duration, and type. The aim of this study was to compare the effects of two exercise models, Nordic Walking (NW) and Pilates, on postmenopausal women.

Exercise training in accordance with the NW model causes statistically and clinically more significant changes in glucose and basic blood lipid levels than do Pilates and dietary intervention alone.

Nordic walking decreased circulating chemerin and leptin concentrations in middle-aged men with impaired glucose regulation.

Dysfunction of adipose tissue is one of the major factors leading to insulin resistance. Altered adipokine concentration is an early sign of adipose tissue dysfunction. The aim of this study was to assess the impact of exercise intervention on adipokine profile, glycemic control, and risk factors of the metabolic syndrome (MeS) in men with impaired glucose regulation (IGR).

Nordic walking intervention seems to decrease chemerin and leptin levels, and subjects in this intervention group achieved the most beneficial effects on components of MeS.

Health benefits of Nordic walking: a systematic review.

Modern lifestyle, with its lack of everyday physical activity and exercise training, predisposes people to chronic diseases such as diabetes mellitus, obesity, hypertension, and coronary artery diseases. Brisk walking as a simple and safe form of exercise is undisputedly an effective measure to counteract sedentary lifestyle risks even in the most unfit and could lead to a reduction of the prevalence of chronic diseases in all populations. The purpose of this review is to systematically summarize, analyze, and interpret the health benefits of Nordic walking (walking with poles), and to compare it to brisk walking and jogging.

Nordic walking exerts beneficial effects on resting heart rate, blood pressure, exercise capacity, maximal oxygen consumption, and quality of life in patients with various diseases and can thus be recommended to a wide range of people as primary and secondary prevention.

Effects of Nordic walking on cardiovascular risk factors in overweight individuals with type 2 diabetes, impaired or normal glucose tolerance.

Physical activity remains a valuable prevention for metabolic disease. The effects of Nordic walking on cardiovascular risk factors were determined in overweight individuals with normal or disturbed glucose regulation.

Nordic walking improved anthropometric measurements and exercise capacity. However, unsupervised Nordic walking may not provide a sufficient increase in exercise intensity to achieve ultimate health-promoting benefits on the cardiovascular parameters assessed in this study, particularly for those with disturbed glucose regulation.

12 weeks’ aerobic and resistance training without dietary intervention did not influence oxidative stress but aerobic training decreased atherogenic index in middle-aged men with impaired glucose regulation.

Our aim was to determine whether 12 weeks’ aerobic Nordic walking (NW) or resistance exercise training (RT) without diet-induced weight loss could decrease oxidative stress and atherogenic index of plasma (AIP), prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) and MetS score in middle-aged men with impaired glucose regulation (IGR) (n=144. 54.5 ± 6.5 years). In addition, we compared effects of intervention between overweight and obese subgroups.

Nordic walking decreased prevalence of MetS and MetS score. Improved lipid profile remained a predictor of decreased MetS score only in NW group and it seems that Nordic walking has more beneficial effects on cardiovascular disease risks than RT training.

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