Walking Is Great Exercise, How Much Do You Need Every Day?
Walking every day is great exercise and an excellent way to keep you and your body healthy. But how much walking do you need to day? Is there a minimum and a maximum amount?
The accepted wisdom for a daily walk to be beneficial, is that you need to walk 10,000 steps. As a matter of fact, this 10,000-steps-per-day guideline has been recommended to the general public for a quite a while.
However, a new study reports that this guideline was never based on any scientific study. Rather, this number, the researchers point out, probably comes from a Japanese pedometer first marketed in 1965, called Manpo-kei. Conveniently, Manpo-kei translates to “10,000 steps meter.” That’s what you call great marketing.
Walking: How Much Do You Really Need?
The study results found that for older women, there is no health benefit in taking more than about 7,500 steps per day. And even 4,400 steps a day may significantly reduce your chances of an early death.
The study measured the physical activity of 17,000 women, with an average age of 72. They wore accelero-meters to measure their distance and pace.
Researchers found that approximately 4,400 steps significantly correlated to lower mortality rates compared with 2,700 steps.
The death rates for those who walked 4,400 steps was 40 percent less compared to walkers who did 2,700 steps. The mortality benefits leveled off at 7,500 steps.
The authors wrote that the results could be a motivator for all senior citizens: “These findings may serve as encouragement to the many sedentary individuals for whom 10,000 steps pose an unattainable goal.”