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Gentle exercise is something of a buzz word now. I guess some experts don't want to scare people away by implying that exercise might be hard, or even require some effort. I've even seen running and weight lifting given as examples of gentle exercise. Calling it that isn't going to make running gentle, and if it's gentle, it's not exercise. Exercise requires some effort, although pain is not necessary for gain. Nordic walking is low impact, but it's still exercise--and that's good. Nordic walking can be low, medium, or high intensity, depending on your skill level, physical condition, and what you want to do that day. Medium (moderate exercise) brings lots of health and fitness benefits. You have to do more low intensity exercise to get the same benefits as with moderate (go longer or farther). You have to be skilled and in good shape to maintain high intensity (strenuous) exercise for very long, but that doesn't mean you should stay away from it. So go out and enjoy Nordic walking, but don't be surprised if it doesn't feel "gentle."