The Power of Power Hiking: Why You Should Try It This Summer
Power hiking is a type of high-intensity exercise that runners employ when the trail they are on becomes too steep to be traversed using standard techniques. When the trail is very steep, it is often easier to use power hiking methods than attempting to power up the incline using traditional techniques. The most basic method of power hiking involves placing your palms on your thighs and knees, then supplementing the strength of your legs by pushing with your arms as you push with your legs.
Using this additional force, it is possible to undertake longer strides and engage more muscles in your legs and arms. This is a very different approach to that usually used in hiking, generating much more force and much longer steps. For those who are looking for a way of getting in shape quickly, or who want to take their existing hiking hobby to the next level, power hiking could provide the perfect solution.
When to Use Power Hiking
Power hiking is harder than normal hiking, but it is an effective technique for runners who are faced with steep inclines. It will require both practice and patience in order to develop and perfect the technique, but once you do, you will be able to take on more challenging hiking trails. You will need a steep surface to power hike on; it won’t be any use to you while on flat terrain. In the context of a race, you will need to make snap decisions on the fly as to whether you should try and run up a hill or instead turn to power hiking.
When you are training, or if you are planning on using power hiking as a means of generally keeping fit, you instead need to find an appropriate incline to test your power walking on. As you would expect, the steeper the incline, the harder it will be to climb, and the more intense a workout it will provide.
Why You Should Power Hike This Summer
Power hiking provides some excellent, high-intensity exercise. This means that it provides a number of benefits to those who put the effort in. For one thing, it is a fantastic way of increasing your overall fitness level. The workout you get from power hiking is different to that you would get from running or hiking individually.
The summer months are a very inspiring time for many creative people anyway, but you might not be aware that there is scientific evidence to suggest that hiking could further boost creativity. Research suggests that spending time outdoors is associated with better reasoning, creativity, and memory skills. This is in addition to the positive effects that exercise has on people’s moods.
If you are planning on undertaking any form of competitive running, it is worth your time learning how to power hike. With this technique under your belt, you will be able to tackle a wider range of scenery and terrain, allowing you to take on new types of challenges while also improving your performance on a more familiar terrain.
In order to get the most out of power hiking, you will need to make sure that you have the appropriate form. However, before you can begin, we need to talk about the right equipment. In particular, make sure you have a good pair of hiking boots to support your feet and ankles as without these you will be much more susceptible to strain and injury.
When you are power hiking up an incline, always lean forward so as to shift your center of gravity up the climb slightly. This will prevent you from being pulled back with each step, and it will also allow you to engage your glutes rather than your quads, giving you more power in your legs. Most athletes recommend that you try to mimic the angle of the incline in the amount that you lean.
The second most important thing to consider is what you will do with your arms. For the steepest grades, putting your hands on your quads will move your gravity forward. Adopting this position also allows your arms to more effectively reinforce your legs and provides some additional push with each step.
Finally, it is important that you make sure not to stiffen your legs too much. This can happen if you press down on the wrong part of your leg, therefore preventing you from bending your leg properly. It is natural to try and keep your knees relatively straight when walking up a hill, but this makes it harder to use your glutes effectively. If your legs are too stiff, you will fatigue much more quickly.
Power hiking is an excellent way of exercising. Not only does it allow you to work out a number of different muscles simultaneously, it is also a very useful technique to be aware of as a runner. While helping you stay fit this summer, power hiking will also enable you to take on new types of terrain and explore new landscapes.