What is better than the warmth of the sun shining on your skin, the wind flowing across the trees, and the earthy texture of the path beneath your shoes. Hiking is a form of physical exercise which is not only fun but it’s also amazing for your body and soul. If you’re a nature lover, then the perfect activity for you is hiking, where you get to explore your surroundings and burn calories. If you need some inspiration or are a beginner when it comes to hiking, scroll down below to find out the different reasons why hiking is super beneficial for your overall health.
The Physical and Mental Benefits
- Reduces the risk of a heart disease
Hiking causes your heart rate to increase and your blood circulation to flow more efficiently throughout your body. When done regularly, hiking can also serve to boost the good cholesterol in our body known as “HDL” as well as decrease the bad cholesterol “LDL” and triglyceride levels. Along with that, it also helps to keep the blood pressure and blood sugar in check. These improvements will assist in minimizing your likelihood of developing cardiovascular diseases.
- Improves your balance
Hiking is a great way to develop your balancing skills. It enhances overall strength and endurance since it involves the usage of various muscle groups. Hiking, in particular, stimulates and strengthens your legs and core, which help to keep the body stable on rough grounds. However, not every trekking route will put your balance to the test. As your hiking skills develop, explore pathways with steeper gradients such as a steep hill or more irregular terrain containing obstacles, such as rocks. Additionally, hiking can improve proprioception which is the awareness of the position and movement of the body in connection to its environment.
- Builds up bone and muscles
Any trekking route, whether it’s a gentle elevation, a steep ascent, descent, rocky hills, or a mixture of it, will lead to your body utilizing multiple muscle groups. In terms of muscle groups, uphill climbs focus on your quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, and glutes, while descent improves your knees and hip flexor muscles. Additionally, the added load of a backpack helps to strengthen your shoulders and back. Hiking also works the muscles present in your torso. Apart from muscle strength, hiking and other weight-bearing exercises also promote bone density by building bone tissue. It is undoubtedly a total-body workout!
- Boosts up mood
After a trek, the body naturally creates endorphins that help control mood swings, stress, and anxiety. In addition, hiking connects you to nature, making it an excellent method to deal with the tension that comes with living a fast-paced life.
Hiking Safety Tips
- If you’re going alone to hike, make sure you’ve informed someone about the time you’re coming back, as there are a lot of network issues in the majority of the hiking trails. It’s better to go hiking with a friend or family.
- Do not enter a trail you’re unsure of or any closed-off areas to prevent getting lost.
- Take enough water with you to not get dehydrated.
- Wear shoes that are comfortable.