Preventing problems with your feet while hiking
Your feet can really take a beating out there on the trail. From blisters to sprained ankles, hiking can present a whole host of foot related problems. Here are a couple of tips that can make your hike more enjoyable.
Train Your Feet for the Hike:
Don’t underestimate the importance of conditioning your feet for hiking with a heavy pack, especially if you’re new to hiking. Before setting out, start taking short hikes, gradually increasing the weight in your pack until it is fully loaded.
The Right Fit:
Your boots or hiking shoes are probably the most important part of keeping your feet feeling good. Hiking socks are often thicker than normal socks; so before trying on new boots at the store, make sure that you’re wearing the same socks that you’ll be wearing out on the trail. A good fit is essential, and should never be overlooked.
Break In Your Boots:
Don’t hit the trail with brand new boots. Wear them around the office, the store, and around the house for a few days to make sure they have time to stretch and soften up.
Put Down the Cotton! Moisture-wicking wool or synthetic hiking socks can help your feet stay cool and dry out on the trail. Wearing the wrong socks can make things miserable and can increase your chances of getting painful blisters.
Manage those Blisters:
The moment you feel a blister coming to the surface, STOP! Now is the time to fix the problem. Check out our tips for preventing blisters.
Keep Them Clean:
Many hikers neglect their feet. Take the time to massage, air out, and wash your feet throughout the day. And don’t forget to trim those nail.
Take it easy! If your feet feel tired or start to hurt, find a cool place to sit down and rest. When you stop for the night, a cool pair of sandals can help keep your feet cool and aired out.