This is not a request for medical advice.
I’ve always heard that regular walking was one of the simplest and best ways for an average person to exercise. This websitestates that walking is a low impact form of exercise, which is what I had been taught. While talking to a friend recently he made the point that walking regularly, and we aren’t talking about 20 miles a day here, will eventually wear out your joints, specifically your hips and knees.
I explained to him that unless you are really pushing the definition of ‘walking’ to include ‘long distance walking’ or ‘speed walking’, I didn’t think long term it would cause any real damage. He went on to say that by definition walking (just like jogging or running) causes some amount of wear, and if you do it long enough it will eventually lead to problems. I called BS (… to myself) and walked away at that point. BTW my friend lives a fairly sedentary life while I spend a good portion of my time hiking in the woods around my house.
So who is right? Is walking a great low impact exercise and something that you can do until you’re 90 years old with little or no adverse effects, or will regular old fashioned walking wear out your joints and lead to a hip or knee replacement sooner or later? We’re talking about a normal, healthy adult with no other medical issues to speak of.