How to choose trek poles
HOW TO CHOOSE SKI / TREK POLE
Parts of a ski / trek pole
A trek or ski pole basically consists of the following parts:-
- locking mechanism,
- basket or wheel, and
There are three basic things to consider when buying trek poles for nordic walking, trekking, normal, freeride and freestyle skiing. And this are the length, the handle, type of wheel/basket,tip and material of the shaft.
What type of handle to choose
The grips of the poles are almost always made of plastic or rubber in order to ensure maximum comfort and an ergonomic handle. Often they have “notches” for the fingers to keep them still and prevent them from slipping. The handle end are connected to the buckles to be inserted in the wrist to prevent the pole from being dropped. Some brands have safety systems integrated in the hand grips in place of the classical buckle, so as to protect the wrist of a skier, ensuring that the ski pole can be detached from the hands during a fall or is slammed around violently thus ensuring the skier will not be injured .
If you are an amateur skiers who ski mostly just to have fun, you’ll want to choose a pair of poles with a wrist strap, flexible nylon, which ensures a secure and comfortable grip but at the same time helps to keep the stick with you in case of loss of grip, or in case of a fall, it will be easier to lose to ensure that there hurt. To properly use the wrist strap to the stick, the hand is inserted from below and then hold knob and stick with the whole hand.
This also applies to freeriders and / or freestylers .
If you are an experienced skiers and even a competitive skier , we suggest you choose a more aggressive grip, with detachable straps that ensure optimal grip and ensure their release when held against a pole on race, any other obstacle, thanks to its innovative system of “click and go” (picture above).
If you are a lover of hiking the handle suitable will be the same as the amateur skier, or with a simple and very comfortable strap for your mountain hikes.
As regards the Nordic Walking the handle is functional to the main feature of this sport, or similar to that of the expert skier.
What type of wheels and tips of the pole to choose?
There are various types of wheels / tips on the sticks but we will illustrate the main ones:
• The classic tips , which are used on almost all the sticks to ensure the perfect adherence with the ground in the woods or on dirt roads, or to sink better in hard snow. There also exist versions of the most robust and agressive (such as those of the picture on the left), which have the point of contact with the ground made of particularly hard and resistant material (Vidiam).
• The tips for hard grounds like cement , are made of plastic and are primarily used in trekking and Nordic walking to avoid making noise and ruin the classic tips on very hard surfaces such as concrete, or asphalt.
The small wheels , are plastic disks located close to the tips of the sticks that help point them in the well groomed snow (hard) and to secure support for optimum thrust. Summer in the use of trekking, if you mount help to not do too much to sink the sticks in the soft ground, such as mud or grass.
The large wheels , are similar to those as small structure, but larger diameter specially designed not to sink into the snow (soft).
What kind of stick should I choose?
The shaft are built with different materials that make them vary in duration, in their weight and consequently also in price. Ski poles are mainly made of aluminum, but also in carbon fiber or mixed. Those made from aluminum are more rigid and therefore more stable, but also heavier, while carbon shafts are lighter, thinner but also a bit ‘more fragile.
For the trekkers there are special telescopic poles with the main feature of lengthening and shortening of its shaft.
Most telescoping trekking poles, aluminum and carbon alike, have three segments, each slightly narrower than the one above. The segments slide into each other and are held together by a variety of locking mechanisms. A few models available, often specifically designed for snowshoeing, have only two shaft segments. Two-segment poles don’t collapse as well as three-segment poles, making them harder to travel with or stuff into a pack during a rock scramble. Compact and junior length poles are available for those who don’t need as much pole length. Tall individuals will want the longest poles available.
Some hiking poles have shock absorbing springs between the telescopic sections to reduce the impact on your wrists, elbows and shoulders and are of most benefit when descending to take the shock out of your arms.
Adjusting the length of the shaft for trekking
Going over different contours of terrains, it is best to adjust the trek pole by shortening or lengthening the shaft to ease the pressure and provide better support to your arms and also provide better balance.
Basic rule is that the elbow should be at an angel of 90 degrees when holding the pole on a flat ground. When going uphill, shorten the pole(s) for better balance so that you will not be over stretching when striking the pole in front. When descending, increase the length of the pole(s) to avoid better too much forward and falling over.
When traversing on a contour, you can try adjusting one pole longer and the other shorter to have better balance by string the shorter length pole on the top and longer pole on the bottom of the slope.
Built in aluminum which makes it light and flexible, mounts a soft ergonomic knob with adjustable strap, resistant toe cap Carbide, has the ability to be quickly stretched with Fast Lock system by measuring a minimum of 115 cm up to a maximum of 145 cm, equipped wheels for snow, excellent value for money.
• For the Nordic Walking There are special sticks with ideal characteristics for the main functionality of the stick, or the push. As you can see in the picture below they handle useful opening of the hand at the end of thrust, they have regular tips and even those for cement (given that it is widely practiced even in the city) and are also extensible .
The choice of the ski pole, especially in the competition season, varies depending on the specialty.
• For the Giant Slalom , these ski poles are designed to withstand impact against the posts of the race and at the same time to be light and stable in thrusts. They often have a slight curve to better adhere to the body when you put in the aerodynamic position in races or track, nowadays many athletes are still preferring those rights, but carbon. The measure used compared to using traditional, goes to preference, but always be at least 5-10 cm higher.
• For the Downhill , sticks are similar to those for the giant slalom but their curvature is more accentuated and evident for the fact that in the downhill races is very aerodynamic position to buy more speed. Longer are bought at least 10 cm above the measurement used a traditional skier, this is because in the downhill is very important thrust in the starting phase, then indeed it is hardly used throughout the tendering phase.
• For the Special Slalom , there are rights sticks without any type of curvature, on which are always applied on the dial or directly below it of hand protection, to ensure that the impact with the pole does not lead to negative consequences hands and face regularly slip away. In this case, the measurement must never be too long because if during the slalom track is accidentally unintentionally fit between the legs can be withdrawn more easily.
• For the Freeride and Freestyle , there are special sticks mainly characterized by their height, lower than normal to be comfortable in the jumps and performed acrobatics.