From Ishara Beach Hotel, I strolled downhill towards the lake. One step after another, I bypassed the man-made sandy beach area created by the hotel and proceeded to a small forest farther ahead. At some point, I was swallowed by nature — literary. The trail I pursued turned into a tunnel covered by dense vegetation. It felt like walking into a cave.
I do a lot of walking whenever I visit new places. As I usually say, walking enables me to observe and absorb more. Around the world, walking tours are becoming more and more popular. As they walk up and down, tourists feel the heartbeats of their host communities.
Walking can be done in an unfamiliar area without any fear of getting lost. In this age of advanced technology, numerous applications and GPS navigation functions are available at our fingertips. Some of them work offline. They don’t require any data plan.
Credible studies have revealed the impact of regular walking in reducing the risk of a heart attack, stroke and diabetes. Walking is also an effective weapon in the fight against obesity, high cholesterol levels, blood clots and constipation.
Additional studies reveal that walking combats age-related dementia. On top of all that, the oldest form of exercising improves memory and curbs the deterioration of brain tissues caused by old age. This simple but highly rewarding activity can be done by old people without stressing their delicate joints.
According to Brian Fulton, a renowned physiotherapist, our ancestors benefited tremendously when they started walking upright. They did a lot of walking and enjoyed sound health. Then came the industrial age and its ensuing revolution. Automobiles were invented and jobs that make us sit down all day were created. This new lifestyle is to blame for increased cases of soft tissue disorders and a plethora of other complications.
Another study conducted by the University of Stanford shows that regular walking increases our creative output by 60%. Researchers call this kind of creativity divergent thinking. Walking stimulates a free flow of ideas. Engaging in activities that allow our minds to wander empowers our innovative acumen.
I usually jog early in the morning but I still walk from time to time. Running is more physically demanding but walking is as effective, if not more effective, than running according. I have tried both and roasted more calories while running. However, walking can serve others better depending on several factors including age, level of fitness and specific goals.
From Ishara Beach Hotel, located in Nyamasheke District, I strolled downhill towards the beach and proceeded to the forest. At some point, I was swallowed by nature. I walked into nature’s mouth.
The author is visiting all 30 districts of Rwanda. His tour of Nyamasheke is sponsored by Nyamasheke District, The Click Creations, Tec Global Ltd, Elimo Real Estate Ltd and Exposure.