How to Walk for Power, Strength and Vitality!
Healthy walking is to walk with pep and vigor so as to work the legs and gluts. By working those two large groups of muscles a great deal of energy is expended so as to strengthen the body and increase the fat burning capacity while not walking.
Edwin Checkley in his monumental work:
A Natural Method of Physical Training
explains the action of healthy walking:
1. "In walking, keep face and chest well over the advanced foot, and preserve the habit of lifting the body with the muscles and by the inflation of the lungs. Hold your head high. Don't lean back; don't push out your chest; don't hold neck, shoulders or arms rigid. Everything easy. Holding the crown of your head high will lift your chest. It is not necessary to tilt the head backward.
2. To breathe costally (with the chest) by a conscious effort of the nostrils and the muscles of the upper chest may require and does require a conscious restraint of a tendency to use the abdominal muscles. For the successful acquirement of this beneficial method of breathing the abdominal movement must be specifically resisted. The result is not only the strengthening of the lungs and chest, but the strengthening of the waist region.
3. Avoid a mincing step. Take a free, firm and easy stride, avoiding any hard jarring motions, keeping in mind during every movement or exertion the function of the muscles to support and move the body. Walk vigorously, reach forward from the hips with each stride and spring from heel to toe. This will work the calves and thighs, increasing their size and power!
4. Persistently subdue the abdomen and give the prominence to the chest. Walk with the whole body, and do not move as if afraid of jarring some internal machinery. Give the hips free play, and in walking - the more of this the better - practice the contraction of the waist muscles (ie. draw in the abdomen). In this way a continuous training - the only training that is effectual - is kept up, and the result will be immediately and lasting."
These principles of healthy walking are fully explained and illustrated in:
Warrior's Way: The Strength Secrets of Ancient Warrior Societies
Return from Healthy Walking to The Exercise Protocol