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Written By NaviPay Blog Contributor:
Suzanne Davis
Coastal Business Evolution, LLC

Starting to feel like a quarantine queen or a cooped-up king? For many of us our homes have become our offices, a classroom for our kids and our own personal gyms. The weather is absolutely gorgeous in Florida right now. Martin County Beaches are open and Palm Beach County beaches open on Monday, May 18. It is time to get your fitness on where the sand meets the sea!

There are several significant benefits to that stroll on the beach! Bet you are thinking, a walk on the beach is for a romantic stroll, not a workout. Think again! A walk on the beach can pack a punch in the fitness department as well as provide some beauty bonuses and mental health benefits! So, what are those benefits?

  • Calorie burn and joint protection bonus! You use 20 to 59 percent more calories walking on the beach than you would walk at the same pace on a hard surface. The sand also acts as a natural cushion creating low impact joint protection.
  • Much greater effort! Your muscles and tendons work much harder as your foot moves around on the unstable surface of the sand. Walking requires 2.1 to 2.7 times more energy and jogging 1.6 times more energy than walking on a hard surface.
  • Calorie burn and joint protection bonus! You use 20 to 59 percent more calories walking on the beach than you would walk at the same pace on a hard surface. The sand also acts as a natural cushion creating low impact joint protection.
  • Much greater effort! Your muscles and tendons work much harder as your foot moves around on the unstable surface of the sand. Walking requires 2.1 to 2.7 times more energy and jogging 1.6 times more energy than walking on a hard surface.

So, there are obviously lots of reasons why you should be taking that walk on the beach, but there are also some things to keep in mind for maximum benefit without and downside. Tips for the best of beach walking:

  • Avoid walking midday to prevent sunburn or heatstroke. The best times are first thing in the morning or in the evening.
  • Apply sunscreen before you venture out. Where a hat and carry water with you.
  • Move your hands to prevent swelling.
  • Begin with a solid surface warm up to prepare your muscles.
  • Sans shoes has lots of benefits that we mentioned above, but for longer walks shoes can help to prevent muscle and foot pain. Take short jaunts barefoot, then switch to shoes. You can build up barefoot time gradually to prevent any strains or injuries.
  • Build up to soft sand walking slowly. Walking on hard packed sand at the waters edge is the training ground for soft sand walking while building up to more time on soft sand. Soft sand provides much more of a workout so start with 5 to 10 minutes a day in the soft sand and build from there.
  • Use the wind to your advantage. Start your walk facing into the wind. Use the wind at your back to return when you may be starting to feel the fatigue from your efforts!
  • Divide your route to balance your slope walking. Beaches have slopes and your foot closest to the ocean can be several inches lower which makes you feel off kilter and can become quite tiresome. Plan your walk one quarter of the way in one direction, reverse and go halfway past your starting point, reverse again to your start. This provides three changes of direction to relieve and balance out the negative effects of the slope.
  • Pay attention to tide table for any walks more than 30 minutes. Your wide stretch of beach can turn into a tiny strip of sand at high tide.

So now you have all that you need to know to take a walk on the sunny side of life and work it to your advantage—at the beach. ENJOY!

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