For those who can, it’s a good idea to walk backward on the treadmill or even run backward. As well as enhancing your balance, this exercise will help you tone a variety of muscles. A terrific interval exercise variant, it even increases your heart rate.
Backward running has been shown to lower the risk of injury and improve performance in sports.
2 To put it another way, it increases your lower body’s power and strength while also enhancing your ability to safely shift directions.
How to do Backward Treadmill Walking:
- Adjust the treadmill’s pace to your preference.
- Lie on the treadmill with your back to the controls, gripping the handlebars with your hands as you go.
- Begin walking backwards on the treadmill as soon as you get on it.
- For the chosen amount of time or distance, walk backwards.
What Does Reverse Walking Do?
There are some fundamental differences between forward walking and reverse walking. There are some motions that are considered normal gait characteristics when you are walking ahead. In this position, your heel strikes the ground first.
When you roll from your heel to your toes, your straight knee bends slightly. While you’re doing this, your opposing leg will rise up and out of the ground. During regular walking, the heel-to-toe motion continues.
When walking backwards, your gait is inverted. In the air, your leg swoops and extends backward, bent knee-to-thigh. As you roll from your toes to your heel, your bent knee should straighten.
After that, you’ll repeat the motion with your heel off the ground and your knee straight. The advantages of a toe-to-heel gait pattern are numerous.
Increase Knee Range of Motion
The range of motion in the knees can be increased by reverse walking. The ability to straighten your knee may be impaired if you’ve had a knee injury, knee surgery, or knee arthritis.
As you move from your toes to your heel as you walk backward, your bent knee will fully straighten. As a result, your knee extension range of motion is improved.
Handrails When Walking Backward: Yes or No?
To begin, they should unquestionably be utilised. You should only walk backward with your hands off the side rails if you are confident enough that you can keep your footing. Your postural muscles have to work harder to keep your body in an upright position while you go backward. You run the risk of falling if things aren’t sturdy enough.
When walking or sprinting backwards, your legs, hips, and ankle muscles all have to work harder to keep everything in sync. The handrails will help you if you identify any weaknesses in any of them that could cause you to fall.
Try to avoid using the handrails while walking ahead on the treadmill if you’ve been doing so for a while now. Begin by walking with only one hand on the rail and gradually remove the other hand as you gain confidence.
When you are ready to walk forward without using your hands for support, you can begin working on your treadmill programme from the back. To begin, use the handrails with both hands, then one hand, and finally, no handrails at all.
Adding Backward Walking Intervals
In order to gain the benefits, you don’t need to spend a lot of time walking backwards As an alternative, only perform backward intervals on the treadmill one or two times throughout each training session. Also, walk backwards for no more than a few seconds at a time.
When walking backwards or forwards, you may wish to pause the treadmill before turning around, depending on your agility. You can utilise the handrails to keep your balance as you’re moving around.
Backward Walking With Inclines
When walking backwards on a treadmill, you can alter the inclination to keep things interesting. Begin slowly, using the treadmill’s incline at its lowest setting, just as you would with increasing the speed. When you do, you’ll likely experience a lot more of a tingling sensation in your thighs.
As your fitness improves, you’ll be able to raise the incline and speed of your workout. If you raise them both at the same time, you run the risk of being unbalanced. Then move on to the next. You have the option to back off if the pressure becomes too severe.
In addition to backward walking intervals, you can also incorporate inclines into your workout. Spend the first minute at a certain slope, then increase the incline by a few degrees over the next minute before returning to the starting position. You’ll burn more calories and build more muscle in less time this way.
Changing your body’s position is another approach. Lower your centre of gravity to a half squat as you walk backwards on an incline. Maintain a straight back and avoid leaning forward. Make your quadriceps muscles work harder with this. Do not do this exercise if you have knee problems, or at least limit it to 30-60 seconds at a time.
Running Backward on the Treadmill
Running backward on a treadmill may be possible once you get adjusted to the backward motion. A few minutes at a time, alternate backward jogging (or slow jogging) with forward walking (or walking).
Lower your speed if you find it difficult to maintain a stable stance when cycling. To improve the intensity of your workout, you can gradually increase the speed. Eventually, you may want to add some inclines to your workout routine.
Treadmill workouts can be spruced up by jogging or running backward. There is a greater chance that you will persist with your workouts if you enjoy it and can see the results. This also translates to long-term outcomes.