Trekking your way through the trails at Asbury Woods
Trekking poles are usually used by hikers for the same reasons as a walking stick, to provide some rhythm to their walking pace and for added support. When used properly, trekking poles increase efficiency and comfort, allowing users to cover more ground, at a higher speed, and with more physical enjoyment than previously believed possible.
If you are interested in hiking with more pleasure and efficiency than before, trekking poles are for you! You can now rent trekking poles at Asbury Woods for $3/hr at our Gift Shop to rent or try one of our Recreational Trail Walks for free with an instructor.
What are the benefits of trekking poles?
- Trekking poles incorporate your arms and shoulders into the hiking motion, allowing you to use more muscle to propel yourself uphill and to control your descent. The net result is an increase in speed, without an increase in leg soreness.
- Poles reduce the impact on your legs, knees, ankles, and feet, especially when going downhill. A 1999 study reported in The Journal of Sports described how trekking poles can reduce compressive force on knees by as much as 25 percent. By allowing the shoulder muscles to absorb some of the force that would otherwise travel through the knees, trekking poles can extend your lifespan as an active, pain-free hiker.
- Using poles can help establish a consistent rhythm, which in turn can increase your speed. This is especially true on flat terrain.
- Poles provide an extra two points of contact, which improves your traction on surfaces like mud, snow, and loose rock.
- Poles help with your balance when dealing with difficult terrain such as river crossings, root-strewn trails, and slick log bridges. Staying balanced helps you move quickly and safely.
Outside Online recently published an article on trekking poles research. Click here for more details.