Trekking poles have been used ever since the dawn of time, although they have changed their form and various other designs. The first trekking poles were actually just walking sticks. Similar to the case with other common accessories, they have evolved, and humans have made them more adaptable and pleasant to use.
If you're wondering what is a trekking pole, then you should read on.
We will answer that question and many others, including what is the best way to use them, which features do they sport, and talk about their health benefits.
What Is a Trekking Pole?
Trekking poles are basically just metal poles that are used to support you when walking or professionally hiking. They are usually made in three or two sections so that they can be extended when needed. This is especially useful if you're planning on traversing different types of tricky terrain, like deserts and rocky cliffs.
In the modern day, they have many features to make the experience of using them more comfortable and worthy. Such are the baskets at the bottom that can amortize the impact of them hitting the ground. They also utilize wrist straps to help you tighten them better to your arms, and improve the overall handling.
Additionally, they tend to sport handles made of rubber that are often ergonomically designed and will make you feel less uncomfortable than you would while handling any other object for prolonged periods.
Short History of Trekking Poles
Even our most ancient ancestors used some sort of help when they were forced to walk long distances to gather food, water, and similar resources. This practice has continued through years, and eventually, these walking sticks became trekking poles.
Somewhere around the fifth century, people in some countries and members of specific civilizations decided to manufacture metal walking sticks that were able to withstand more extended periods of usage. Through the ages, this practice was further enhanced.
Different metals and combinations of which were used and tested by the rough terrains of mountains, deserts, and forests. Finally, the human race settled on creating trekking poles using carbon fiber and sometimes aluminum.
Along with that, various other features have become standardized. Today, you can't find a trekking pole that doesn't sport an ergonomic handlebar or a pair of wrist straps.
How Are Trekking Poles Most Commonly Used?
On the most basic level, trekking poles are used by hikers and other people who enjoy walking for the same reason, and that is to get assistance and better cadence to their walking paces. They aren't quite as needed when the terrain is entirely smooth, but they can provide an increase in speed and the amount of exercise you get from merely walking.
However, when you start traversing more explicit terrain that is harder to handle, trekking poles become extremely useful, and you can feel the amount of support they provide. Whether you're climbing cliffs and stones, going through sand, mud, or even water, you will feel safer and will be in an exponentially lesser amount of danger.
Benefits of Using Trekking Poles
You can use trekking poles to implement the techniques of Nordic walking when you're out hiking. These will significantly benefit your lung capacity, blood pressure, and resting heart rate.
As you already know, many people have these issues, especially as they get older and more susceptible to illness. For this reason, they tend to start exercising using different forms of walking; all the while using trekking poles as a form of support.
Some organizations and individuals are complaining that trekking poles are leaving too much of an impact on the hiking trail, as well as damaging the vegetation that is growing out there. Likewise, they can make marks on the boulders and rocks when used for climbing; these seem to be an issue since people claim it makes the wilderness experience less real.
There are multiple solutions to avoiding these problems. One of the easiest ones is making sure you don't use your trekking poles on weak terrain and wherever you believe it can leave a mark. However, this is not possible for the majority of people who need support for health reasons.
Other than that, you can use rubber endings on the ends of your trekking poles. This way, you will minimize the physical impact they make and not leave any marks on the stones you climb on.
We hope you have learned many useful facts and interesting stories, as well as received the answer to the question of "What is a trekking pole?"
There are almost no negative sides to using this useful supporting accessory. Some environmental issues can be quickly resolved by just being more careful. If you have health issues, especially those involving your heart, you should consider getting a trekking pole and practicing hiking.