Trekking poles are like an extra set of legs that help pull you up the mountain. Like Ambassador Lori Robin Roberts, I didn’t think I would like them as much as I did after I started using them. They come in handy in many ways. Read Lori’s thoughts below.
I have always used one pole on my descent and kept one hand available for balance.
That was then and this is now.
Just a month ago I forced myself to use two poles on the way up the mountain. I pretty much hated it! My hiking friend kept smiling and modelling what I should look like with my poles. She pushed them into the ground and pulled herself up the steep mountain. I internally grumbled. Most of the trek up I dragged my poles behind me and then we came to one steep section.
With an open mind, I slammed the poles into the ground. In that very moment, they helped me. It seemed I moved faster.
They gave me the strength to carry on up when I was tired. After that hike, I was still somewhat on the fence. As the weeks went on, I continued using two poles.
Twelve benefits of using trekking poles:
• Help with stress on the knees, ankles and feet.
• Stability and balance.
• Aerobic workout by engaging body parts you wouldn’t if your arms are just
• Keeps hands from swelling.
• Great on creek crossings for balance and to see how deep water, mud or
• Prevents falls.
• By using two poles you are engaging muscles on both sides of your body.
• Helps on slippery, wet sections or log crossings on the trail.
• Can help you in an attack from a wild animal.
• Helps propel you forward.
• Can help you when bushwhacking.
• Can help you with your stretching.
Weeks later and on most hikes my poles are coming out of my backpack. I use both poles on the ascent and the descent. I feel like it’s helping me with my speed and drive with my love-hate relationship with elevation. I bought poles that fold up small so I can store them in my pack when I am using a rope assist or doing a mini scramble up a rock face.
If you are not sure about trekking poles I hope you’ll give them a second chance. I did and my body thanks me on every journey.