Eccentric Walking at Binna Burra?

Written by Binna Burra

April 9, 2024

The next time you come for a nice forest walk on the Binna Burra side of Woonoongoora (Lamington National Park), why not try ‘eccentric walking’.

Walking is a popular exercise that can increase your healthspan, but does not increase lower limb muscle strength and balance. So, how can muscle strength, as well as physical and cognitive function be improved when you are out walking?

Easy! By inserting lunges or downhill walking or decending steps in conventional walking.

Research published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology undertaken with regular walkers aged between 54–88 years showed that improving ‘eccentric walking’ provided some health benefits not achievable with regular walking.

Renowned TV Doctor Michael Mosley says even walking backwards can improve your health in several ways including improving your gait, balance and mobility.

It may look a bit eccentric if you insert lunges while walking at Binna Burra, but the more people do it and benefit from it, the less eccentric it will become!

Image from the European Journal of Applied Physiology (March 2024) article titled: Effects of lunges inserted in walking (eccentric walking) on lower limb muscle strength, physical and cognitive function of regular walkers.

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