Health and Fitness

Walking backwards: the ultimate to stay fit, take care of the joints and rejuvenate the mind

It may sound crazy to you but… Not only does it help you lose weight, but it also takes care of your knee joints, your heart, and even your memory. We don’t say it, science supports it. Do you want to know more before walking like crabs? We tell you everything about this exercise that is so popular in China and little practiced here.

Sometimes we think we already know everything we need to know about exercising. A bit of cardio, sit-ups, squats, and back again. But then everything changes when we discover that a small change in our training can improve everything and give us a breath of fresh air in our sports routine.

This time it is not complicated at all. You don’t need special equipment or go anywhere to do it. It is as simple and easy as walking 10 minutes backwards . Although it may seem incredible, science has shown that changing the pace when we walk can be very beneficial for our health, even improving the problems that we may have in the joints.


Walking backwards is actually nothing new. At least not in the medical field. Physiotherapists have been using this exercise for years to treat people with knee and hip problems. In the Chinese tradition, walking backwards has also been practiced for years for its health benefits. But what was not known is that it is not only good for people with joint problems. Going backwards benefits us all.

  • It helps control weight. The Faculty of Rehabilitation Sciences at Daegu University (South Korea) conducted a study comparing data collected over the years on this exercise. In their conclusions, they determined that walking backwards could help strengthen the knee, hip and leg muscles, as well as improve endurance and walking speed. The latter hinted that this type of training could be used to control weight and improve overall fitness.
  • It’s good for the heart. There is other research that supports the benefits of walking backwards. For example, a study published in the International Journal of Sports Medicine collected information from young women who walked backwards. Their conclusions were that this type of exercise can also improve the cardiorespiratory system.
  • Other research published in the Journal of Biomechanics , meanwhile, showed that running backwards caused leg muscles to get stronger than running forwards . All this supports that this type of training can be beneficial for anyone who practices it.
  • Preserve your memories. Research published in the specialized journal Cognition also highlighted that walking backwards could help improve memory.


To this day, science has shown us that this type of exercise can bring us the following benefits:

  • You have less impact on the joints. This is why reverse gear is used to treat knee problems. It allows you to strengthen the joint and the muscles in the area without suffering damage or pain.
  • You improve the way you walk. The aforementioned studies showed that walking backwards makes us take shorter and faster steps, which improves the resistance of our legs. In short, it helps us to walk better even when we walk forward.
  • Helps to have better balance . Another proven benefit of walking backwards is that it helps improve balance and body awareness. So as strange as it may seem, walking backwards can help you fall less.
  • You burn more calories. Walking backwards is a cardiorespiratory exercise that involves moving a large number of muscles, especially those of the legs, which are the largest in the body. Therefore, while you practice it you are burning calories, so it can help you lose weight.
  • You strengthen your legs. Walking backwards strengthens the leg muscles, especially the quadriceps. This also helps you lose weight, because the more muscle you have, the more calories are also burned at rest.
  • You improve cardiorespiratory fitness. By alternating walking forwards and backwards, you force your body to change rhythm, which helps us strengthen the heart and improve breathing.
  • You don’t get bored when training. Repeating the same exercises over and over again is boring, and can cause us to become demotivated and stop training. That’s why walking backwards can be very beneficial. It is a new movement, something different in your routine, which will make doing sports every day more fun.
  • You step out of your comfort zone. When you try to do it for the first time you will discover what we mean. Walking backwards is not as easy as it sounds. You have to practice until you get a technique that allows you to increase your speed. Quite a challenge to get out of the comfort zone!

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