Tips for Smoother Downhills
Many think that during hiking its easier to go downhill than uphill.
True going uphill is very tiring but going downhill is the most strenuous for the knees.
I recommends the following techniques that I find very useful to avoid knee injury;
1. My first general role is to HIKE SMART. I mean by this always look and think about your steps and the terrain ahead of you.
By looking and thinking, you can adjust your steps and movement according to the ever changing & diverse terrain.
This can make you slow at the beginning but with time your brain will be doing this subconsciously and quickly.
2. Always use trekking poles, and make them longer when going down hill.
3. Bend your knees so the impact is lessened on your knees.
5. Tilt backwards so you balance better and avoid falling.
6. Dig your heels in the dirt as you hike downhill.
7. If its too steep or too rocky for your knees, your behind can do the job. Sit on it and slide. You will not look like a hotshot hiker going downhill like a mountain goat but who cares
8. Exercise and warm up before hiking.
9. Don’t use painkillers. They only cover the pain. Its wise to know where the pain is to avoid making wrong moves.
10. Always check the soles of your hiking shoes exactly like car tires. If they are worn out and you can’t stick anything between them then you should have them resoled or replaced all together.
11. Always buy your shoes one size bigger. Feet tend to grow in size as you hike.
12. Wear double layered socks to avoid blisters.
13. Finally, rest and stretch your legs every now and then.