5 Ways to Do a Tempo Walk

By Micaela Young |

Use these walk variations to get an effective, heart-pumping workout anytime, anywhere.

When you want a simple, affordable cardio workout to keep your heart and lungs strong, walking is hard to beat. It’s an effective way to increase your stamina for activities you love, whether it’s going on weekend hikes with friends or playing with your grandkids.

But some days it’s hard to lace up and get outside or to hop on a treadmill at the gym. Luckily, you don’t even have to leave your home to get the health- and mood-boosting benefits of walking.

When you need an indoor-friendly way to move or just want to make walking more fun, SilverSneakers Master Trainer Andi has your back. In this video, she’ll show you five different tempo walk variations that you might experience in a SilverSneakers LIVE class, but you can also do them anywhere with open floor space.

Press play on the video above, and let’s have some fun!

How to Use the Tempo Walk

You’ll just need yourself and open floor space to get started.

Follow along as Andi demonstrates five different tempo walk variations. Move at a pace that feels comfortable for you, and make the movements as small or big as you need to. For a challenge, try to pump your arms a little harder, lift your knees a little higher, or pick up the pace.

As you step, be mindful of your posture. Aim to keep your chest up, your shoulders back and down, and your core engaged.

If you’re taking a SilverSneakers LIVE class, your instructor may use one or more of these walk variations. If you’re working out on your own, you can play music and use these walk variations as you like. For example, try them for 10, 15, or 30 seconds at a time.

As always, safety is key. If you have a chronic condition, an injury, or balance issues, talk to your doctor about how you can exercise safely.

Variation #1: March in Place

Stand tall with your arms bent at 90-degree angles by your sides. Start by walking in place. When you’re ready, add walking arms by moving opposite arm and leg as you march.

Variation #2: Toe Tap

Perform the march in place, but alternate tapping your right toes on the floor, pausing, and then tapping your left toes on the floor.

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Variation #3: Out, Out, In, In

Stand tall with your feet about hip-width apart and arms bent at 90-degree angles by your sides. Keep your toes facing forward as you step your right foot out to the right and then your left foot out to the left. Then step both feet back in to your starting position. Continue stepping out, out, in, in. When you’re ready, add walking arms.

Variation #4: Walk Forward and Back

Stand tall with your arms bent at 90-degree angles by your sides. Starting with your right foot, take four steps forward. From here, starting with your right foot, take four steps back. Continue walking forward and back at an even pace. When you’re ready, add walking arms.

Variation #5: Slow Forward and Tempo Back

Perform the walk forward and back, but change your tempo. Take four slow steps forward, and then take four quick steps back. Aim for your quick steps to be twice as fast as your slow steps.

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