Power walking

Power walking or speed walking is the act of walking with a speed at the upper end of the natural range for the walking gait, typically 7 to 9 km/h (4.5 to 5.5 mph). To qualify as power walking as opposed to jogging or running, at least one foot must be in contact with the ground at all times (see walking for a formal definition).

History and techniqueEdit

Some powerwalkers walk with weights

Power walking was founded in the 1990s. In 1999, the Berlin Marathon included a Power Walking division.[citation needed]

Power walking is often confused with racewalking, as the two techniques are very similar.[citation needed]

Power walking techniques involve the following:

  • The walker must walk straight
  • The walker must walk doing an alternating movement of feet and arms
  • The walker must walk with one foot in permanent contact with the ground
  • The leading leg must be bent
  • Each advancing foot strike must be heel to toe at all times
  • The walker must walk not doing an exaggerated swivel to the hip
  • The arms spread completely from the elbows and these move back[1][2]

Power walking has been recommended by health experts such as Kenneth H. Cooper as an alternative to jogging for a low-to-moderate exercise regime, for instance 60–80% of maximum heart rate (HRmax). At the upper range, walking and jogging are almost equally efficient, and the walking gait gives significantly less impact to the joints. When used in this way, an exaggerated arm swing is often used.[citation needed]

Competitions and world recordsEdit

Competitions are held for power walking competitions,[3] with world records held in categories including 5 km, 10 km, half marathon, 30 km, marathon, and multiday distances.[4][5]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Power Walking". Speed Walking -International Website-. Retrieved 20 July 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Power Walking". World Ranking -National and World Race Walking-. Retrieved 3 September 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Competiciones" (in Spanish). Speed Walking website. Retrieved 12 August 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Plusmarcas" (in Spanish). Speed Walking website. Retrieved 6 July 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ "Speed Walking World Records". World Ranking -National and World Race Walking-. Retrieved 31 July 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External linksEdit