Tips for Using Trekking Poles

Do you use trekking poles when you are hiking or backpacking? A lot of people are seeing the benefits of using trekking poles to hike more efficiently. Whether you've used poles before or haven't tried them yet, follow these tips for using trekking poles to improve your hiking performance.

How to Find the Right Size Trekking Pole

Trekking poles adjustable so you can dial them into the perfect size. Follow these steps to adjust your poles to the right size:

  • Place the tip of the trekking pole on the ground.

  • Grab the hand grip and let your arm hang gently at your side.

  • Your elbow should be at a 90 degree angle with your forearm parallel to the ground.

  • Adjust the pole to the proper size.

Remember that your poles are adjustable so you can adjust them during your hike. You may want your trekking poles to be slightly longer when you are hiking downhill and slightly shorter when you are climbing uphill.

How to Properly Hold a Trekking Pole

Many people reach into the strap and hold the pole with their hand. This method can work but it isn't the most efficient way to use trekking poles. If you don't use the straps correctly, you will experience hand and finger fatigue. Follow these tips to use the trekking pole straps:

  • First, start with your hand low and reach up through the strap.

  • Then grab the hand grips.

  • Finally, tighten the strap so you can have a comfortable grip but not too tight.

Holding your poles in this manner allows you to apply pressure to the straps without actually gripping the poles. This will allow you to use your trekking poles without using a tight grip. Your hands won't get as tired and you'll keep moving on the hiking trail.

How to Walk with Trekking Poles

To use the ideal walking rhythm, reach out ahead of you with one trekking pole and step with the opposite leg. You should have your right pole in front while you are taking a step with your left foot. Don't over-think it, you will establish a natural rhythm in no time.

There you have it, the top tips for using trekking poles for efficient hiking and backpacking. If you follow these tips you should be able to hike further, faster and more efficiently. For more information on why you should use trekking poles, read this blog: Why use trekking poles.

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Tips for using trekking poles
Andy Hawbaker
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Andy Hawbaker
Andy is a hiker, backpacker, snowboarder and outdoor fanatic. When he isn't exploring the Rocky Mountains, burning marshmallows or scratching his dog behind the ear, he shares his experiences here on the Sierra Trading Post Blog.
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