First it was the “hot girl walk,” then it was silent walks, and now the latest fitness trend is a total 180 - literally. TikTok’s hot new workout trend is walking backward on a treadmill, without falling on your face or crashing into exercise equipment nearby, naturally. Videos of it have racked up nearly 2 million views, but is it legit? It gets a stamp of approval from some fitness experts.
According to one occupational therapist on TikTok, @Kali.Ot, by walking backward you strengthen all the muscles you don’t use in your knees every day. She explains, “This increases the stability of your knee and prevents any type of injury.”
While walking backward on a treadmill can be awkward at first, personal trainer Michael Hamlin says you don’t need to do it for a long time to get the benefits. He notes that it’s a great workout for the quadriceps, plus, it can improve balance and coordination since it challenges the body to move in an unusual way. Hamlin says backward walking even offers cognitive benefits, as “it requires increased focus and concentration, potentially stimulating the brain.”