Hiking can be a terrific and life-changing experience. Whether you’re hiking around the city or hiking through the Te Araroa Trail, and whether you’re an avid hiker or doing this for fun, you need to make sure your feet are healthy. The kind of shoes that you wear during your hike depends on your personal wants and needs.
Generally, there are no strict rules and regulations on what kind of shoes are best for you. However, you should know that there are different types of hiking shoes that can be used for different types of terrains. This is why it’s vital for you to choose the right pair, especially if you’re planning to use the shoes for a challenging hike.
How Do the Right Hiking Boots Impact Your Health?
- Tread. One of the most crucial factors, when you’re choosing the right hiking boots, is the amount of tread you need. If your shoes have the right tread, you’ll be able to walk on surfaces that you step on with increased grip. You’ll also be able to prevent slippage when you go downhill on any slopes.If you wear tennis shoes or slippers, which have light treads, you’ll easily slip on a rocky and uneven terrain.
- Support and stiffness. When you wear the proper hiking boots, you’ll have the appropriate support and stiffness while hiking. During a hike, you’ll most likely carry a backpack and other stuff needed; thus, your feet will feel more pressure. However, a proper hiking boot will give you stiffer midsoles and more ankle coverage, which can help you avoid getting your ankles sprained easily.
- Streams and mud. When you’re taking a hike, you’ll be exposed to different kinds of weather and different kinds of places. You’ll be walking under the sun or trying to get out of the rain; you’ll also be walking on dry rocks or wet slopes. Thus, you need the right hiking boots that have a lining with waterproof technology. It will help you prevent from getting any foot diseases because of soaked shoes and help you avoid slipping because of stepping in water.
- Endurance. Your boots can affect your distance, since being comfortable enables you to walk more miles. You will also have more speed and endurance with the right pair. If you wear hiking shoes that are uncomfortable or cause you pain, you’ll not want to walk any distance or shorten your time devoted to hiking. Thus, uncomfortable boots can equal a less healthy and injury-causing hike.
- Your whole body. Your body has internal and external forces at work, and how these forces affect your body is referred to as biomechanics. This means that every single movement that you make can affect your whole body. Thus, if your shoes don’t give adequate support, your range of motion is affected.
If your feet are no longer functioning correctly, your whole body will overcompensate. You’ll feel pain in your knees, hips, lower back, and ankles. This pain can lead to injuries and weaknesses in your joints.
Bonus Benefit of Wearing the Right Hiking Boots
If you’re someone who doesn’t hike that often or doesn’t plan to go on a long and challenging hike, you can stick to your tennis shoes. However, if you regularly hike, you should consider investing in a good pair of hiking boots. It can be costly to purchase the right pair of hiking boots, but it can be more expensive for you to pay your medical bills.
Don’t skimp on your feet, as you’ll pay for it dearly when you get injured or get sick because of a cheap pair of shoes. The right hiking boots will have an effect on your whole body, enabling it to function without getting injured or feeling pain. Thus, a pricey pair of boots is an investment for your entire body and overall health.
Tips for Finding the Right Hiking Shoes
Unlike most people think, finding the right hiking boots is easy. Most of hiking equipment stores can offer you advice about the best pair for you. However, these tips can help you pick the right boots:
- Take a tracing on paper of your foot to the store.
- Your feet expand with use; thus it’s better to shop in the afternoon.
- Wear your hiking shoes when trying out a pair of hiking boots.
- Get a salesperson to measure your feet accurately.
- Stand and walk around in the shoes.
- Make sure to trust your comfort level.
- Ensure that the boot material does not irritate you.
At the End of Your Hike
The kind of boots you pick to wear when you’re hiking depends significantly on your comfort level, and what you need. Having a great pair of hiking boots can make hiking on different terrains feel like a breeze. An uncomfortable pair of boots will only result in you being in pain while hiking or getting injured while on the trail. Your shoes can affect your health and your whole body. Thus, your pick in hiking boots is significantly important.