Over the last few years there’s been a mantra of the 10k goal for walking. The average American walks about half of that, so just doubling your walking activity should be enough to make a sizable impact on our health. Interestingly this 10k goal has it’s roots in Japan in 1964. A fitness crazy was inspired by the olympics which lead to the birth of the first pedometer called the manpo-kei, translated as the “10,000 steps meter.”
The goal it seems is to get 150 minutes per week of activity or only about 30 minutes a day of walking.
On top of that you want to do it quickly, a slow mozy for half an hour isn’t as effective as raking up those steps as a brisker pace. You want to average 100 steps a minute.
If you can manage all that you’ll be in the top 15 percent of adults in terms of step-defined physical activity.
When it comes to steps, more is better than fewer, and steps at higher cadences for a significant amount of time are beneficial.
“When it comes to steps, more is better than fewer, and steps at higher cadences for a significant amount of time are beneficial.” said John Schuna Jr., assistant professor of kinesiology in OSU’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences. “A good target for healthy adults is 150 minutes per week spent at 100 or more steps per minute. And in terms of time spent sedentary, less is better – you want to spend as little time not moving as possible within reason.”
Schuna, lead author Catrine Tudor-Locke of the University of Massachusetts and six other researchers analyzed data from 3,388 participants age 20 and older in a National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Their findings were then published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
“One of the questions has always been, what if one person with 10,000 steps per day accumulates nearly all of them in a two-hour time block, and another stretches them over 15 hours – does it matter in terms of health effects?” Schuna said.
“This is a big debate in the field, with a couple of intertwined questions. Current evidence does suggest that moderate to vigorous activity and sedentary time have a certain amount of independence from each other in terms of health effects. But if you’re getting two or three hours of moderate to vigorous activity every day, even if you’re relatively sedentary the rest of the time, it’s hard to imagine the sedentary time would completely ameliorate or wipe out the health benefits associated with that level of activity.”