More specifically, some studies have shown that walking backwards could:
- Reduce lower back pain
- Strengthen the lower back
- Improve your balance
- Improve your posture
- Strengthen your legs
- Improve knee function in people with Osteoarthritis (look at the knees over toes guy)
- It also great for your brain
As an exercise, it is also easy to implement. When you are out walking next, or on the treadmill at the gym, simply turn around and walk backwards for a few minutes and see how it feels.
A good place to start would be to walk backwards for 5-10 minutes a few times a week and build from there.
From a brain point of view, walking backwards is a great way to 'light it up". Our brains crave novelty and doing something different or strange (like backwards walking) will really make our brain think about what we are doing.
Note: Of course, if walking outside, make sure the path is clear behind you, or you have someone with you to help avoid obstacles and any unnecessary accidents. We don’t need any of those.
- Gondhalekar & Deo (2013). Retro walking as an Adjunct to Conventional Treatment Versus Conventional Treatment Alone on Pain and Disability in Patients with Acute Exacerbation of Chronic Knee Osteoarthritis: A Randomized Clinical Trial. North American Journal of medical Science
- Ansari et al (2020). Impact of retro walking on pain, range of motion, muscle fatigability, and balance in collegiate athletes with chronic mechanical low back pain. Sport Sciences for Health.
- Kim & Yoon (2016), Effect of Backward Walking on Isokinetic Muscular Function, Low Back Pain Index and Lumbosacral Angle in Unilateral Exercise Athletes. Indian Journal of Science and Technology
- Alghadir et al (2019). Effect of 6-week retro or forward walking program on pain, functional disability, quadriceps muscle strength, and performance in individuals with knee osteoathritis: a randomised controlled trial (retro-walking trial. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders