Our world has changed a lot in the past millennia and those changes continued to grow and evolved even more in the past few decades. Moreover, in the past few years when the pandemic with global influence started – things changed a lot faster than we ever thought was possible. Many people became isolated, working from home or remote jobs became a common thing even among people with full-time in-office jobs. Social media, emailing, and technological nonsense became a part of daily lives, leaving us more stressed than ever.
Among all this, disconnection from technology and reconnection with nature is what we all need for a body and mind recharge. Moreover, hiking is an outdoor activity with a great mix of exercise, nature, fresh air, solitude, and peace for people, especially the ones living in urban areas. Hiking can be one of the best physical sports to move your body and explore new places. Furthermore, it is good for both your mental and physical health making it one of the best workouts possible for all ages. A relatively accessible sport, hiking is for any age or ability level as they can easily find a hike that will provide them with an appropriate challenge.
12 Reasons Why Hiking Is A Great Hobby For Everyone
- It is a powerful cardio workout that improves the overall health of the heart
- It is a weight-bearing walking exercise that can boost your bone densities
- You can build your muscles, improve & increase – endurance, stamina, and strength
- Strengthen your body core, improve balance and lose weight while hiking
- It boosts your mood and combats symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety
- Get better, improved quality of sleep at night after you complete a hike
- Cross-train for other sports by building your body across different muscle groups and improving overall performance
- Form new bonds when you meet people with similar interests – hiking, strengthen relationships with friends, families, and relatives
- Improve skills like planning, communication, problem-solving, and teamwork
- Ample time for an enhanced connection with nature so that you can fully immerse yourself in your surroundings
- Improve your self-esteem and character by challenging yourself and completing hard trails
- Plenty of mental benefits like improved memory, cognition skills, increased creativity, and reduced risk of Alzheimer’s
What Can You Do To Make Hiking Easier For Yourself?
Now that we know why hiking is a great hobby and all the benefits it provides, you need to know what you can do to get started. The best thing about hiking is you do not have to take extreme measures or travel hundreds of miles just for a good hike. You can just start with short hikes on trails or parks you are familiar with and are located nearby. You can get proper hiking gear like stiffer-soled shoes or boots to support your feet by providing a more stable grip on uneven and potentially slippery terrain.
Footwear is one of the most crucial pieces of body equipment required to prevent slips, falls, and injuries. Ideally, specialized shoes can even reduce the stress on people with physical problems so that they can hike as well as others. Moreover, you need to be prepared with ample water, fluids like electrolytes, a few suitable snacks, and appropriate clothing according to the weather. Wear multi-layered outfits to stay warm in a cool climate and wear sunscreen, light-colored loose clothing during hot weather.
Things to bring along
- Have a clear understanding of the route you will take by using a map, compass, GPS, or an application on your device
- Bring along a friend if you are unsure about your outdoor skills and make the time more enjoyable with familiar company
- Make sure to hydrate before, during, and after the hiking trip and keep sipping fluids throughout the day
- Pack a lightweight poncho or dress in layers so you can adjust to unforeseen weather changes easily
- Take safety items like a firestarter, a flashlight, first aid kit, and a whistle in your pack
- Multi-Purpose Tool or Knife is another must-have item to cut or open your stuff
- Sunscreen and sunglasses for protection from sunburn and ultraviolet radiation
- A comfortable backpack that won’t put excess strain on your back and shoulders
- Trash bags to keep the trails clean, free of garbage so that you can avoid meeting bears or any animals who are after your food or junk
- Bug Spray for insects like ticks, bees, spiders, and mosquitoes you might encounter on your hike
- If you are away from public restrooms during your whole journey, bring toilet paper, hand sanitizer, waste bags, and any other necessary toiletries
- Your daily medications are also important if you are going to be hiking for a long time
Check out this article which takes about How To Prepare For A Hike The Night Before.
Things That You Can Do Along With Hiking To Make It More Fun
- Picking edible berries and beautiful, good-smelling flowers
- Fishing for native fishes in nearby rivers & lakes, or hunting for allowed game animals on land
- Foraging for edible food items like fruits & nuts and seeds to roots and flowers
- Geocaching – locating caches or treasures in the wilderness
- Orienteering – put your navigation skills to the test on unknown lands
- Paragliding – climb the hills or mountains and soar back down using gliders and winds
- Photography – photos and hikes go together like any cliche you can think of
- Scrambling and Climbing – enjoy a good scramble like a climber
- Sit And Watch – find a place off the trail and sit and watch mother nature or other people
- Tracking – imagine yourself as a survivalist, track animals that are not dangerous, but be on alert for them
- Learning – real hands-on learning among outdoors or at visitor centers, municipal recreation programs, and park facilities
- Play games like I Spy, scavenger hunts, word games, riddles while on the move
- Identify Flora and Fauna or collect and dry them for your collection
- Picking up trash and cleaning out the trails – mostly preferred by environment activists
- Stargazing at the end of a hike or go for travel for the sole purpose during the night
- Arts and crafts – draw, paint, sketch, express your creativity through crafting
- Meditate – find a spot to be alone or away from the crowd
- Listen to an audiobook, music, or anything you want by using headphones or earphones on your hike
- Go Swimming – a quick dip, or competitive swimming
- Bring along your four-legged friends to walk and exercise with you
Hiking is a great way to escape your busy daily lives filled with hustle-bustle. Moreover, hiking is a great hobby because of the significant advantages it gives your body and mind. Along with that, there are plenty of fun activities you can do while trekking across trails. It is great for anyone looking to spruce up their upcoming trips or trying to promote hiking among friends and families. Moreover, if you are planning for long treks or overnight hikes, you can camp under the huge night sky. Nevertheless, it is recommended to stay active, alert, and engaged throughout your time on trails and campgrounds.
Research and read about the area through local guides and guidelines provided by veteran hikers or local experts for a successful hike in the wilderness. You need to know about the wild and potentially dangerous animals running around in parks so you can avoid them with proper caution. Take specialized gears like ice picks or trekking poles with you if you need additional support while hiking or to make hiking easier since they are extremely useful.