Welcome to the world of people who choose to regularly walk much
faster and/or much
farther than is required for mobility or basic fitness. They include
the racewalkers who prefer competitive walking with strict rules,
the long-distance (ultra) walkers who walk 50 miles or more, and
other walkers who walk very fast and/or very far without rules--no matter what they are called.
They are the walkers that carry on the legacy of 19th century "fair heel and toe" walkers (called Pedestrians) who captured the imagination of generations of people, and who served as the basis for the second-most popular betting sport (behind horse racing) in the United States during much of the latter half of that century.
supports the world of fast/far walking in several ways.
: Our primary focus is on race walking technique, but most of the technical elements of race walking can help all fast/far walkers walk faster and farther. From a one-sentence directive that can get you started on a walking program, to a discussion on the physics of walking, we give you a smörgåsbord
from which to pick the items that help you most.
: In support of our narratives on technique, we present several photo- and graphics-based, slow- and stop-motion animations that can help you see what is really occuring when race walkers go past you in a blur of flying arms and legs. If you are like me, it is easier to imitate a mental picture of a walker than it is to recreate the walker's motions based on a narrative description of them.
: Our set of Web site links is extensive and current. We are always looking for more sites that support fast/far walking, and we check our list periodically to make the links are still active.
: To help you pursue your walking goals, we provide several useful calculators. Our very popular track calculator allows you to effectively use all the lanes of your local track. Our road course calculator allows you to better plan for, and evaluate your workout or race performances. Our age-grading calculator lets you compare performances by eliminating gender, age, and distance factors. (For example, compare your mile running time at age 18 with your 10K race walking time last month to see if you are improving, holding your own, and letting things slip.) Our Body Mass Index (BMI) calculator may be useful in understanding why some slippage is occuring.
: The Tutorials section is our classroom where various topics can be taught using a slideshow format. Each scroll-free screen covers one aspect of the topic being presented, and navigation through the tutorial is done via "< PREV" and "NEXT >" buttons. The first tutorial is the "Racewalking 101" class that has been at the North American Racewalking Foundation (NARF) site for the last few years.
: "Pluswalker" is my term for anyone who chooses to regularly walk much
faster and/or much
farther than is required for mobility or basic fitness. It includes race walkers, ultra-distance walkers, marathon walkers, speedwalkers, and even those marathon "runners" who never quite get off the ground. This section gives an overview of the history of Pedestrianism and of the major categories of fast/far walkers. I've also included some personal observations about being "one of those people."
: We help you locate other resources you can use in support of your walking program. We link you up with some of the better books, CDs/DVDs, videos, articles, and photo galleries on fast/far walking. We also help you locate the information you need on topics we do not cover at this site (e.g., training, racing, stretching, drills, equipment, event calanders/fixtures, race walk judging). For all topics, even the ones we focus on, we provide you links to all the resources of which we are aware.
We invite you to take a look around our Web site. If you like what you see, please bookmark our site and come back often. If you are not interested in what you see, thanks anyway for dropping by. We'll leave the porch light on, though, just in case you catch the "walking bug" later and need a place to help you get started on a fast/far walking program. We always have room for one more person in our close-knit family.