Preston stroke survivor back on his feet by Nordic Walking

Steve Clark Nordic Walking in Avenham Park. Photo Credit: Somandeep Kaur Kandola

A Preston man believes Nordic Walking has helped him gain normality back after suffering from a stroke in 2008.

Steve Clark, 58, was getting ready for bed before having his stroke and ended up in a coma for two weeks.

Doctors told his family to say goodbye to him, which they did, however he was eventually able to return home.

Steve said: “I was left with very little mobility and, consequently, I was spending a lot of time at home and becoming very insular.

“A friend of mine brought me to Avenham Park, where upon I met Dawn, who’s the Nordic Walking instructor, and she invited me along to join the Nordic Walking group.”

Nordic Walking is a sport that involves walking across country with long poles resembling ski sticks.

Nordic Walking Group in Avenham Park
Nordic Walking with Dawn group in Avenham Park. Photo credit: Somandeep Kaur Kandola.

Since joining the group, Steve believes his confidence, mobility and speech has improved and enjoys the social aspect of the sport.

“I especially enjoy the banter, because I’m ex-building trade, so there was a lot of leg-pulling and fun-taking, mickey-taking, so it enabled me to have some sort of normality back into my life.”

Dawn McLean, 59, set up the group in 2013 after an accident in Africa left her struggling to walk.

“It has grown slowly and steadily and recently quite hugely.” she said.

People are very comfortable when Nordic Walking however it can be “very alien” because you’re using four limbs to walk instead of two.

Dawn believes that the sport helps physically and mentally and people have told her it makes a huge difference to their lives.

People can get involved by searching ‘Nordic Walking with Dawn’ on Facebook.