Walking confidently takes comfort, experience and sometimes a little bit of support. We’re proud to support Greater Manchester locals because we know all the amazing benefits that come with walking regularly.
Being a confident walker means different things to different people. It might be walking longer distances, walking with and around others, or even walking alone. A lot of us will have a goal of some kind for our walking. A great way to begin reaching that goal is with just a little bit of confidence.
Here we offer our five best tips that will help you on your way to becoming a confident walker.
Wear the Right Walking Shoes
Wearing the right shoes is always important, whether it’s for walking, running or dancing. However, there are no ‘right’ shoes to wear when walking, because everyone is different.
Some people have flat feet and need the right kind of cushioning so walking doesn’t hurt their calves and knees. Others have high arches, so more strain will be placed on the ball and heel of the foot. A well-cushioned shoe with enough space inside will help with this.
Some people want protection from the elements and prefer a shoe designed for walking, with all the frills and features that these come with. For others, wearing shoes you feel you look good in will help you be a confident walker.
Find a shoe that fits you—and wear it with pride.
Do Something You Enjoy
You’d be pleasantly surprised by the extra spring in your step listening to your favourite album gives you when walking. You’d also be surprised how quickly time flies when you’re listening to a podcast or to the radio.
Doing something you enjoy when walking is something that helps even the most seasoned walkers. If you enjoy spending time with other people, try walking with them. Holding your partner’s hand, chatting with a group of friends or playing with the kids is good for having something else to focus on while walking. You’ll be walking without even thinking about it!
Whether you’re a social butterfly or a quiet soul, walking is for everyone. It’s an activity that is easily tailored to suit you and your personality.
Familiarise Yourself with Routes
A huge part of being confident is being comfortable, whether it's what you’re wearing or who you’re with.
You will also find comfort in walking by familiarising yourself with your local routes. Taking a little time to explore your local streets and parks will help you do this. In time, you won’t even have to think about how long it is, or where you’re trying to get to… you can simply enjoy the walk and take everything in.
Being able to do this will give you comfort and confidence even in new environments, knowing you can take on all the twists and turns of walking and exploring.
Remember what we said about walking in new environments? Try it some time. People often feel nervous walking in new places. People can also find walking in the rain or snow quite scary. This is perfectly okay!
Preparation is key when challenging yourself with a new route or terrain. Start small. Walk for a little longer to start with. Or walk a different route to your local shop. You can build on these personal challenges as slowly or quickly as you want to. Some people will never like walking in the snow, or walking in completely new areas. That’s okay too!
Challenge yourself in ways that keep you happy, safe and comfortable.
Don’t Worry About What Everyone Else is Doing
There’s always going to be someone who is more or less experienced than you. People may be faster or slower. They also may have different walking techniques, breathing patterns and stride lengths. People will have different clothes and shoes.
We all walk in our own unique way. Your confidence shouldn’t be determined by what other people are doing, but should come from within. Follow our top tips, and you’ll be a confident walker in no time.
Find your own walking route, style and rhythm and believe in it!