Is Walking or Running Better For You?

Walking and running are both forms of cardio, especially down the street at Lanikai Beach! A walk on the beach is no walk in the park, the sand adds resistance and adds an added calf and leg workout. Kailua is full of active people; runners, walkers, cyclists, windsurfers, and rowers. Walking and running are two of the most common exercises you’ll see on the streets on Kailua. Here at Oahu Spine & Rehab, some of our patients are still confused on whether walking or running is the best choice of exercise for them.


According to the American Heart Association, walking daily is just as efficient for lowering your risk of heart disease. Brisk walking can lower the risk for high cholesterol, diabetes and high blood pressure. Not to mention that any cardiovascular activity is great for your heart, muscles, and joints. Walking is a great low-impact cardiovascular workout, because it isn’t lot of pressure on your hips and knees during exercise. Another great cardiovascular workout that is great for building resistance and muscle is walking uphill like hiking Lanikai Pillboxes or increasing the slope on your treadmill.


Running is a higher intensity workout that burns more calories faster than walking.  Because of the higher intensity, it is also a higher impact on the joints and muscles. Because of the extra strain on your joints, you are more likely to get injured while running. If you are recovering from an injury or a surgery, it’s important to ease your way into running as to avoid further injury. When you’re planning a run, make sure that you have the proper footwear that is going to support your foot and absorb impact. Also, if you’re not running on the treadmill, make sure that you know the terrain of the area that you will be running.  If you have been doing cardio exercise consistently for a while, it’s time to get running and add a little challenge.

Here at Oahu Spine & Rehab, our physical therapists agree that the argument of walking vs. running depends on the patient. Some patients should not be running due to injuries, pain, or risk for injury. Walking is a safe option for almost all patients, as it can help with everything we mentioned above. If you have any questions about whether running or walking is the best option for your cardio exercise, call us today at 488-5555.

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