How to Use and Benefits of using Trekking & Hiking Poles (Tutorial)
Here is a great video courtesy of Fitappy.comregarding the benefits and techniques on using poles.
Hi, today I'm going to talk about benefits of using hiking poles, or also called trekking poles, or walking poles. I'm going to talk about benefits and then I'm going to explain how I use them.
Here's the thing, I like to think of them as additional set of legs. It gives me more balance, stability, and additional support. And I know my knees thank me after each trip. When I use them I walk faster and I have more confidence while walking on the trails.
I said balance and stability, you'll find them very useful while crossing streams when you have to step on slippery rocks, and you just don't want to fall into the water. That thing will give you additional support, trust me. Also, when you walk on uneven surfaces, similar to this. Apparently, using hiking poles improves your posture so it helps your breathing, it creates greater capacity for your lungs, and it gives you greater endurance and strength. And for those who like to hike and exercise, your upper body gets a workout as well.
If you go on a day hike, or several days backpacking trip, there's a chance you'll get some interaction with wildlife, for example, bears, you heard that thing you're supposed to make yourself appear bigger, bigger than the bear to scare the bear away because then the bear will think you're bigger than him and will not attack you, or there's a chance it will not attack you. Thankfully, I've seen many bears on trails and they were friendly.
However, what you need to do, if you have your hiking poles, simply wave, jump, and scream, then the bear may think that you're bigger than him and may not attack you. Ok? Also snakes, if you hike on trails and you see a snake, just simply kick it out with a stick.
Now I have a set of hiking poles, how do I use them, right?
Simple, put your hand through the wrist strap, drop your hand down, and grab it. That's the proper technique of holding it. Hiking poles look almost exactly like skiing poles. And I've seen people hiking on trails using skiing poles.
However, hiking poles are adjustable. You can adjust the length or the height. And the length, the proper length for anybody would be 90 degrees on your elbow. So what it does, when you go up the hill distance changes so you're supposed to shorten them to make them shorter. If you go downhill, clearly you have to elongate them, extend them.
You will definitely feel it on climbs, you just simply step forward and push it off. Right? Going down, make sure this is a little bit longer, you put it in front of you, and then you'll definitely feel less of an impact on your knees.
How do I use them? Here's the correct pattern. Left foot, right arm. Right foot, left arm. All right? Do I follow it? I try not to think about it because I know with time you'll develop your own rhythm and you'll find what works for you. All right? So you don't have to really think about it.
When you shop for hiking poles, some of them are spring-loaded so you press on them, you feel like it goes back, you feel that spring. Mine do have springs, some of them don't. I don't know what the difference is, I didn't feel it. However some people told me if you don't have that spring eventually you'll feel it in your wrist, like there's a lot of tension on your wrist. But I don't know if it's true, you'll have to find out for yourself, maybe do some research, or ask someone.
Thank you for watching, and have fun on your trip.
Poles! Essential Kit for Backpacking
If you have never tried trekking or hiking poles, here is an awesome video courtesy of Willis Wall Media regarding the importance of using poles on the trail.
Hi, this is Steve from Willswall. Most skiers use poles but not backpackers do. Maybe you've never used trekking poles before or are just unconvinced about the benefits. Well, I've dug into the archives for this session on backpacking; "Poles: Not Just for Skiing.""
I learned about using poles over 25 years ago when I took a mountaineering course. All the guides had them. Once I started using them myself, I never stopped. Speaker 2:
I have trekking poles. And these are pure carbon poles with cork grips. They weight 5.6 ounces and that's for the pair, it's like there's nothing here at all.
I use poles for just about every outdoor adventure. When my daughter was nine I convinced her to use one of my poles to help in cross-country scrambling. She's had her own pair ever since.
I especially like poles for creek crossings, and negotiating undulating terrain. And I consider them essential for the slightly aged crowd. Poles reduce stress on knees and feet, provide better stability, and consequently, reduce risk of falling or injury. Trekking poles, they're a hiking essential.Check out this explanation from this archives.
Let's talk about poles, 10 to 15 years ago, I used to get comments like, "Hey dude, where's your skis, man?"" Now it's pretty much standard attire for a well-dressed hiker. You'll see â€˜em all over the place.
And there's a good reason for that; climbing, when you're taking a step and you have no poles, and you've got a big pack onâ€”but hopefully you won't have a big pack on after watching thisâ€”and you step up, with the exception of putting your hand on your knee and helping you up, it's all, ugh! All of your muscle concentration is right in one leg.
And it's the same thing going down. Ball bearing stuff which is very slippery and a lot of times your feet will go right underneath you. But if you go and take a step down, if you don't have poles, then all of your weight lands on the downhill leg. Plus, not to mention, the uphill leg gets hold of you while you get down there. And all of the force of the braking action goes right into the top part of your quads. And this is especially fatiguing and it puts a lot of strain on your knees.
If you do have poles on the uphill, now you have three points of contact at any one time and when you step up, you're able to transfer some of your weight of course on to your upper body and your hands, not to mention your stability that you get from having three points of contact. And you can share the load as you come up. I'm pushing, I'm using my elbows, I'm using my triceps, and all my upper body, along with the leg. So a lot less stress on the leg which means it's going to be a lot more comfortable hike.
One the downhill, it's just as important. When I come up to this point here I can always plant the poles down and now I have a couple more points of stability and I'm not likely to slip on the ball bearings as I go down. But again, it shares the load, I'm able to gently step down without putting a whole lot of stress on the downhill knee that I'm landing on that one leg.
And so if you take the 21,000 feet of elevation gain and the 21,000 feet of elevation loss that you're going to experience on this trail, and multiply that by the number of steps you're going to take to do every one of those feet, if you share the load with the rest of your body, you're going to have a lot better hiking experience if you use poles and don't put so much stress on your quads, and on your knees.
You convinced me!
Proper Baskets for Yukon Charlie's Trekking Poles
Here is a great video on how to use and install trekking pole baskets from Yukon Charlie.
Trekking Pole enthusiasts, it's Bill again from Yukon Charlie's here to answer some of the most commonly asked customer service questions we get regarding our trekking poles. Probably the most common question we get asked is about the pole baskets.
Most of our trekking poles come with two gaskets that are interchangeable and designed for specific uses. The Snow Basket is larger and used mostly in snow conditions to keep the pole from post falling when it's planted. The Trekking Basket is smaller in diameter and is typically used on harder ground for hiking, walking, etc.
To install the basket simply thread the basket on clockwise making sure to thread it all the way to the top so that it will rotate freely but it will not tighten anymore. To remove, simply rotate counterclockwise while applying downward pressure. We suggest checking your baskets both before and after use. It is possible they could be loosened up and they could be lost. If you do lose your baskets, go to our website YUKONCHARLIES.COM and there's an easy-to-use form to get a replacement.