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Trek Hacks: Using Trekking Poles The Right Way

Trek: Annapurna Base Camp

Did you know, using a trekking pole correctly can save your knees and energy during a trek? Trekking poles are a standard device that offers stability and support on a trek. Yet, many trekkers use it all wrong. Some carry it only because it is mentioned in the list without knowing how to use it properly. 

There are several reasons why one should use a trekking pole. It helps you move quicker, provides extra support, and reduces stress from your knees and ankles. When used correctly, a trekking pole can make your trek much easier and your pace quicker. However, not many people use it correctly. To help you out, we have put together some expert tips that will help you use the trekking pole efficiently. Read on to know more.

Setting Up The Pole

When setting the pole, make sure that you adjust it to the correct height. Always keep the height of the pole such that a 90-degree angle is formed at your elbow. If the angle is obtuse, increase the height of the pole. If the angle is acute, reduce the height of the pole.

When opening the strap, make sure you can loop your hand comfortably through the strap but it isn’t too loose. The strap should properly cross your palm, wrapping beneath your thumb.

Gripping The Pole

The grip on your trekking pole should not be too tight, grip it in a relaxed way so that you can easily rotate it back and forth between your thumb and forefinger. The more relaxed your grip, the easier it will be to flick the pole forward. A tight grip can also tire your hands and wrists quickly.

Also, never hold the pole towards the valley side or slope side. In case you lose grip, the pole may slide in the valley and you may fall with it.

Walking With The Pole

When using the trekking pole during your walk, make sure that the point of each pole connects the ground at the same time if you are using two poles. When walking on leveled ground, hold the poles angled slightly backward and plant the points parallel to your body. Put your entire body weight on the pole as you move forward. Always fix the trekking pole on the ground first, once it is secured then put your weight on it and step ahead.

Climbing And Descending With The Pole.

When climbing up, put the entire weight on the pole and use it to pull yourself up. If the height of the pole seems longer, reduce it for the ascent section.

When climbing down, put the entire weight on the pole and slowly land your feet on the ground. This reduces strain on the knees. Here holding the pole with the palm from above of the grip helps. If required, increase the length of your pole. Remember to land slowly! 

Practice how to increase and reduce the length of the pole so that on the trek, you can easily adjust the length.

Storing The Pole

While sleeping, place the pole such that it does not hurt you or spoil the tents. It is best to keep the pole outside the tent for your safety and not to break the pole by accident.

Trekking poles are great assistive devices that make your trek much easier and more comfortable. Following these tips, you can make the most of your trekking poles and use them appropriately.