Quick Hiking Tips
Start slow. A short, local hike is best for beginners. Gradually work up to trails with hills or uneven terrain.
Bring a buddy. It’s best not to hike alone at first, especially on unfamiliar or remote trails. A partner or group can help you navigate and assist if you get hurt. So before you go out grab your buddy and your hiking sticks first. As your skill level improves, you’ll feel more comfortable going solo.
Know before you go. Familiarize yourself with the trail map. Check the weather and dress and pack accordingly. If storms are a possibility, rethink your plan.
Use common sense. Follow marked paths and trails. Avoid contact with questionable plants and animals.
Get into a groove. On the days you can’t make it to the trails, power-walk on a hilly terrain while carrying various degrees of weight in a backpack -- it will keep your hiking skills and fitness level on track.
Advantages of Hiking
Health. Hiking is a great cardio exercise that helps prevent heart disease, diabetes, breast cancer, and can even lower blood pressure levels. It strengthens muscles by working your shoulders, strengthening your core and improving your balance. You can burn up to 370 calories in an hour hike, and its a great alternative to any boring treadmill.
Mental. It is said that hiking helps boost your mood and reduces stress. Hiking offers a unique way to take in and appreciate nature while exercising at the same time. Many say hiking sticks are better exercise tools than treadmills. A 20 minute hike per day can help reduce stress and make you an all around happier person.