Is Walking a Good Enough Exercise?

If walking is the only physical activity you can do, is that enough exercise to stay healthy? Experts say yes, but there are other factors to consider.

Nick Blackmer is a librarian, fact-checker, and researcher with more than 20 years’ experience in consumer-oriented health and wellness content.

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Working from home means Americans are more sedentary than ever. All that time spent sitting down can have repercussions, from heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and obesity.

The good news is that taking a walk can offset those health problems.

“If walking is all someone does, it could be sufficient,” Melody Ding, PhD, MPH, associate professor at the University of Sydney with expertise in epidemiology and chronic disease prevention, told Verywell via email. 

According to Benjamin Bengs, MD, an orthopedic surgeon and Director of Special Surgery at the Center for Hip and Knee Replacement at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California, a short daily walk can confer several health benefits, including:

Ding added the benefits of walking are no different from the benefits of most other forms of physical activity. Regular movement can help stave off chronic illness like cardiovascular disease, some cancers, and diabetes.