On asking why she chose to practice Nordic Waking in particular, she answered that she loves walking.  It also suits her lifestyle and gives a full-body workout. 

She practices the sport in Switzerland primarily and in Delhi/ Gurgaon in the winter months. Tisha has also participated in some walking events in Switzerland, the Nordic Walking marathon in Purbeck and UK.  

 With 10 years, you're bound to have a story to share. Follow Tisha's journey in this interview. You can either learn something or get inspired. Hopefully both. 

nordic walking

Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

No one in particular. There’s Mohit Sood of HASTPA who started organizing MTB events in Shimla.

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most?

Gill Stewart of Nordic Walking UK and Jeannine Böhm of Nordic Walking Switzerland. They are pioneers of the activity in their respective countries.

What keeps you motivated and inspired? Basically what keeps you going?

I am driven by the passion of seeing Nordic Walking become a popular activity in India. My ultimate goal would be to hold Nordic Walking events and festivals throughout the country.

When and how did you first start practicing Nordic Walking?

In the winter of 2007 in Klosters. I had hurt myself while cross-country skiing but didn’t want to just do no sports. So I booked a private Nordic Walking lesson to learn the technique and started.

Do you have memories from your first day? How was it like?

I had a very good instructor and she was very patient with me throughout the lesson.

I didn’t take too long to pick up the technique as I already knew how to do cross-country skiing.

Do you follow a diet, if yes, what are your reasons for the same?

Not really. I try to avoid industrially prepared food, fried stuff, white flour and sugar.

How do you structure your days?

I try to fit in some kind of sports every alternate day and I always begin early in the morning to not disrupt any of my other plans for the day.

What equipment or gear do you find indispensable for accomplishing your practice?

The Nordic Walking Poles

How long have you been training? Why did you decide to become a trainer?

I have been training for around 5 years now.

It was the next logical step as I wanted to be able to pass on my passion for the activity.

How do you build relationships with your students?

I have been a teacher, teaching English to adults in Switzerland for 20 years and I am a patient person by nature. I am also a good listener and have long realized that empathy is the key to building up a good relationship with my students.

Do you remember any funny incidents from your training sessions?

We share a lot of laughter while walking.

Dogs howling at us as we walked by, was a common incident on the streets of Delhi.

People shouting “Jay Mata Di” as we walked by or asking “Why are you skiing, there’s no snow here.”

Do you practice Nordic Walking with your family? If not, do you enjoy playing sports together as a family?

No. We all do different kinds of sports. Hiking in the mountains is the only sports activity we do together.

Why do you think people should take up Nordic Walking as a sport?

People who already walk are the ideal targets as they can add onto their walks by giving themselves a full body workout.

Also good for people who run, on days they want to do something less strenuous.

Ideal for those who haven’t done any sports for some time and want to get back into it.

Is there any specific age-group or specific type of ability that you recommend the sport to?

Usually people over 30. Till 80. Even orthopedic rehab patients.

No special skills required.

What are the main benefits of Nordic Walking?

It is a great alternative to running, improves your posture, 40% more effective than regular walking, exercises 80% of the body’s skeletal muscles, builds up your cardiorespiratory endurance, agility and coordination. And it’s mood enhancing, being outdoors.

What would you have done differently if you knew then what you know now?

I would have tried being associated with Decathlon right from the beginning to collectively raise awareness for the activity.

What do you find are the biggest stumbling blocks and what are the best ways you’ve found to overcome them?

The biggest stumbling block has been, not having enough trainers to train people. And the fact that I had financial restrictions and couldn’t do proper marketing using influencers to raise awareness of Nordic Walking throughout the country.

What would you have done differently if you knew then what you know now?

I would have tried being associated with Decathlon right from the beginning to collectively raise awareness for the activity.

What's the best advice you've ever received?

To train more instructors and make the poles available in the country as soon as possible.

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

That it can’t be a one man show. India is a country where influencers work the best to promote an activity.


When I was juggling travelling to Delhi and being in Gurgaon at the weekend mornings, being the only instructor in town.
The only way is to be able to train more instructors who would be contracted under Decathlon and The Nordic Walking Association of India. The two organisations working together can spread awareness faster.

The biggest long-term goal would be to hold Nordic Walking Festivals in India like the one I attended in UK.

Immediate goal would be to begin training trainers and work out a strategy with Decathlon where we both stand to benefit from it.


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