Hiking and trekking poles have a lot of beneficial features that make them ideal for regular use. They improve your fitness, make going up and down hills easier, help you clear away things in your path, reduce strain on your legs and back, etc. There are many reasons to use these poles on any outdoor outing you end up enjoying.
That said, there are still a few issues that may occur if you decide to use a trekking pole on one of your outings. Like any optional piece of equipment, there are those that may not find a pole as suitable for their activities as others. Here are a few issues that may occur if you decide to use a trekking pole.
1. When You Don’t Need the Pole, it Can Be a Hassle
Poles are very useful when they are in use. When they are not being used, however, they become somewhat of a burden. Adjustable length poles are designed to reduce the degree that these poles impact your hike, but they still need to be carried somehow and, depending on how they are designed (especially if they use baskets) they can get caught or tangled in vines, trees, rocks, etc. when they are not in use. Full length hiking poles should only be carried by those that expect to use them, and adjustable poles are a good way around this problem if you have something to keep the pole in when you are not holding it.
2. When You are Using a Pole, Your Hands Aren’t Free
Another problem that may occur when you use these poles is that with each pole you use, you lose the use of one of your hands. Having free hands on a hike or trek is useful, and while trekking poles are great for reducing injury, those that do use them have one less hand available for checking maps, chatting on the phone, eating, or grabbing onto the side of a hill. Those that use their hands on a hike or walk often may find themselves inconvenienced.
3. Extra Expenditure
A benefit that many people like from trekking poles is that they use more of your entire body for the hike. Because there is increased energy for your upper half and core (energy that is generally focused just on your legs), hikes can be more beneficial to you physically. But some people would prefer not to use their entire body and keep the energy on their legs, in which case the benefits of the pole are no longer benefits.
Poles Are a Valuable Tool
Hiking and trekking poles are valuable pieces of equipment for those interested in going out on long hikes or walks. Still, they are not for everyone, as those that do not want to expend extra energy, temporarily lose the use of their hand, or have no place to store it will not find it as enjoyable as others that may choose to use the poles.