As summer ramps up so are the ATP Adventure Trips! These trips are designed for you to be able to challenge yourself in a safe and supported way. Our trips range from outdoor rock climbing to white water rafting to skeet shooting! Our most recent trips include Trekking Trips. These consist of hikes led by trained ATP staff in which we encourage the use of outdoor trekking poles. These poles are largely used by hikers to reduce exercise induced muscle injury during the trip. 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. The research that supports the use of Trekking poles states that there is a lower perceived rate of exertion by individuals who use trekking poles-- this means that your brain is perceiving the workload as an easier activity when compared to walking without the poles. The poles also reduce the prominence of injury because using the trekking poles decreases the force placed upon your hips, knees and ankles, while increasing balance, and evolving upper body muscles in a predominantly lower body activity. The use of trekking poles also improves a hikers posture, minimizing muscle soreness at 24 and 48 hours after a hike! The correct use of trekking poles reduces muscle damage, assists in maintaining muscle function in the days after a mountain trek, and reduces the potential for subsequent injury. The use of trekking poles is important, but using them with proper technique is also extremely vital to reap the maximum benefits. To start, make sure the poles are the correct height. Have your upper arm tight to the side of your rib cage, then you bend your elbow 90 degrees. The pole should be set at this height and remain here for the duration of the hike. It is also important to make sure you use the poles in a reciprocal fashion, this means you place the left pole forward as you take a step with your right foot and vice versa. By setting up your poles and body this way you are utilizing proper walking posture and decreasing the likelihood of overuse injuries that could occur on a hike!
Posture: elbows bent at 90 degrees
If muscle soreness begins to occur in the upper body, take one of the trekking poles and grab it with both hands shoulder width apart. Raise the pole as high as you can above your head and stretch the low back and shoulders.
If muscle soreness begins to occur in the lower body, take a pole and stretch it across your back and shoulders. Keep your legs straight, bending at the hips, moving your chest towards the ground. As you move lower, you will feel a stretch in the back of your legs and through your low back!