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Trying to lose weight? Try walking BACKWARDS on a treadmill.

Trying to lose weight? Walk BACKWARDS on a treadmill: A fitness expert says a weird fitness trick can help you burn more fat

  • Jumping on the treadmill may sound like the obvious weight loss solution.
  • But instead of using it normally, try turning around and walking backwards.
  • Fitness researcher says bizarre trick brings ‘greater health benefits’

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Desperately trying to lose weight? Jumping on the treadmill may seem like the obvious solution.

But instead of using it normally, try turning around and walking backwards.

A fitness researcher says the bizarre trick, which he admits is misleading, provides ‘greater health benefits’.

Jack McNamara, professor of clinical exercise physiology at the University of East London, claims it can help you beat the bulge.

A fitness researcher says that walking backwards brings 'greater health benefits'

A fitness researcher says that walking backwards brings ‘greater health benefits’

He pointed to a study that found that women who followed the bizarre exercise regimen for six weeks lost more weight than their normally exercising counterparts.

The research, published in 2005, recruited 26 women. Half followed a six-week backward walking training program and lost 2.4 percent of their body weight.

McNamara said the activity burns 40 percent more energy than walking forward at the same speed.

This is because it requires more concentration and uses additional muscles.

One of the other major benefits of walking backwards, according to McNamara, relates to improved stability and balance.

It makes us take shorter and more frequent steps.

This, experts say, leads to “better muscular endurance for the lower leg muscles while reducing the load on our joints.”

Activity also forces a change in posture and uses the muscles that support the lumbar spine, the five vertebrae in the lower back. Strengthening these can reduce the risk of back pain.

writing on The conversationMr McNamara said: ‘Walking backwards is simple, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

‘So how can you add walking backwards into your exercise regimen?

“By walking backwards, we are more likely to miss obstacles and hazards that we could collide with or fall into.

“So, for the sake of safety, it’s best to start inside where you won’t bump into someone or outside in a flat, open area.

“Once you’re more confident walking backwards, you can start to speed things up and even transition to a treadmill, making sure to use the guide rails when necessary.”

People who don’t want to run backwards can still make walking more difficult by dragging weights with them.

Mr McNamara said: ‘If you use weights, start light.

“Focus on multiple sets rather than long distances, and maintain the integrity of your technique over a distance of no more than 20 meters to begin with.”

The NHS says people should get two and a half hours of moderate-intensity physical exercise per week.

This can include brisk walking, bicycling, and pushing a lawn mower.

Adults should also do muscle-strengthening activities, such as carrying heavy shopping bags, lifting weights, and yard work, at least two days a week.

HOW MUCH EXERCISE DO YOU NEED?

To stay healthy, adults ages 19 to 64 should try to stay active on a daily basis and should do the following:

  • at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, such as bicycling or brisk walking, each week and
  • strength exercises 2 or more days a week that work all major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms)

EITHER:

  • 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity such as running or an individual tennis match each week and
  • strength exercises 2 or more days a week that work all major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms)

EITHER:

  • a mix of moderate and vigorous aerobic activity each week; For example, 2 30-minute runs plus 30 minutes of brisk walking equals 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, and
  • strength exercises 2 or more days a week that work all major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms)

A good rule of thumb is that 1 minute of vigorous activity provides the same health benefits as 2 minutes of moderate activity.

One way to get the recommended 150 minutes of weekly physical activity is to do 30 minutes 5 days a week.

All adults should also break up long periods of sitting with light activity.

Font: National Health Service