Are Trekking Poles Necessary? Answers Revealed

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate and an Affiliate of other programmes, I earn from qualifying purchases. This page may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something that I have recommended. There is never an additional cost to you.

Trekking poles are now a very common sight amongst people who enjoy walking or hiking at a fast pace. This is because they provide excellent support to your muscles, joints and spine by decreasing the stresses applied to those major areas of your body.

However, there are some people that don’t use Trekking poles and some people even advocate against them, claiming they damage the environment!

So, let’s talk about when you should and maybe shouldn’t use those incredibly useful tools, and discover whether trekking poles are necessary or not.

What Are Trekking Poles?

what are trekking poles

Trekking Poles are basically the same as walking sticks, just evolved over time. Many upgrades have taken place as humans developed better skills and manufacturing processes.

Throughout history, they have been known to have been used by ancient humans to help them walk vast distances, whether discovering new territories or searching for resources, such as food, water or shelter.

In the beginning, they were made of wood, but these were neither durable or stable. Hence, some people starting casting metal walking sticks. This practice was extremely successful and over time people started experimenting with combining different materials. This eventually led to the creation of the perfect hiking tool.

Nowadays, Trekking Poles are made from aluminium or carbon fibre, and they have a vast array of additional features. Some have wrist straps for greater stability, different endings for changing terrains and ergonomic handles that make holding them for lengthy periods more comfortable.

If you are planning a hike or walking trip, and you feel that you may need to implement some of the walking techniques, then Trekking Poles might just be the hiking accessories that you need!

Are Trekking Poles Necessary?

are trekking poles necessary?

There are two very good reasons why you should definitely consider Trekking Poles as part of your Walking “arsenal”.

Firstly, when traversing difficult types of terrain that can’t easily be passed without some additional support or the help of a friend. For example, climbing an uncomfortable rocky slope, where the dependable Trekking Pole comes into it’s own, making it much easier to overcome than working on your own.

Similarly, walking through mud, sand or boggy ground can be an unpleasant experience. Trekking Poles makes it so much easier than walking with no tools.

Secondly, the other reason you might consider Trekking poles is that of your health. It’s well chronicled that walking faster for longer improves certain existing medical conditions. Problems with hearts, lungs and blood pressure can all be improved with using Trekking poles.

There are a few hiking styles that are made for resolving these problems, such as the Nordic Walking Technique. These are extremely popular these days.Combined with Trekking poles, you will be able to walk faster and longer than ever before. Hence, more exercise, improving your resting heart rate and blood pressure along with your general health.

When Can You Go Without Using Them?

Of course, you don’t have to use Trekking poles. You can become a professional hiker and a great master of the outdoors without the additional support of these walking accessories, but there really are no disadvantages to them, so deciding on whether you you want them or not, is more of a personal choice than a question with a definitive answer.

If you like exploring nature and accomplishing great deeds in the form of walking distances without any help, then it’s definitely possible to do so without using trekking poles. But, no one will think of your achievements as less worthy even if you support yourself with this great contraption.

When Shouldn’t You Use Trekking Poles?

best budget trekking poles

In some rare cases, you shouldn’t use trekking poles as there are some ethical rules about saving the environment. These only apply to places where their physical impact can harm the rocks, ground, and vegetation.

Make sure to have the proper endings attached to your trekking poles when climbing rocks, so you don’t scratch them. Similarly, don’t press them too hard when you see that doing so will leave a mark on the ground or destroy some of the local flora.


What Trekking Pole Should I Buy?

We recommend the Trekology TREK-Z Collapsible Tri-fold Trekking Pole. It has everything you need in a great trekking pole and comes at a very reasonable price at under £40

Here’s what one delighted customer said about it:

“Fantastic Quality Poles!!

30 August 2018

Size: 115cm-135cm
Colour: Black
Verified Purchase


Trekking poles have been around for a very long time in one form or another, and no one can answer whether they are necessary. However, there are so few disadvantages to them that we feel they should be part of your hiking gear. It’s just like hiking boots. Are they necessary? No. But you wouldn’t want to go hiking without them now, would you?

If you enjoy walking and improving your health, you should definitely try some Trekking Poles.

Missed our last post? See here What Size Trekking Pole Do I Need?