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Health benefits of Nordic walking; a systematic review
  1. Stephanie Mathieson,
  2. Chung-Wei Christine Lin
  1. Musculoskeletal Division, The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Stephanie Mathieson, Musculoskeletal Division, The George Institute for Global Heath, University of Sydney, PO Box M201, Missenden Road, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia.; smathieson{at}

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▸ Tschentscher M, Niederseer D, Niederseer J Health benefits of Nordic Walking; a systematic review. Am J Prev Med, 2013;44:76–84.


Physical activity is essential for good health. Physical inactivity is a leading risk factor for non-communicable diseases, accounting for more than three million preventable deaths.1 A recent physical activity trend is Nordic walking, which is a form of brisk walking utilising walking poles that actively engages the arms and upper body. It is promoted as a safe, efficient, biodynamic exercise with numerous health benefits, suitable for all ages.


To examine the health benefits of Nordic walking.

Searches and inclusion criteria

Database searches of Web of Knowledge, PubMed, CENTRAL, CINAHL and PEDro, from 1950 to the present (date not specified) were conducted to identify randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and observational studies, written in English and German, using the main search terms of ‘Nordic walking,’ ‘pole walking,’ ‘pole striding’ and ‘exerstriders’. Excluded studies included ‘improper’ Nordic walking technique or if Nordic walking poles were not used. Two independent reviewers performed …

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  • Contributors SM and CL selected the systematic review. SM wrote the first draft of the manuscript. SM and CL contributed to interpretation of the data and revision of the final manuscript.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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