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Those metal tips on trekking poles

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
Apart from the snoorers, I find that the other unwanted noise on the Camino is the clickity-clicking produced by those metal tips on the trekking poles! I think that most of us who have experienced the Camino will agree that one of the most special gifts is Peace, giving us time for reflection and meditation, enjoy the silence, possibly only interrupted by birdsong. Not so when those trekking poles approach! We are jarred back to reality. We exchange a "buen camino", slower our pace, hoping that they will quickly move out of our earshot! I wonder if these walkers ever hear the birds singing!
The other problem with these metal tips is the dammage that they cause to the paths, especially the "man-made" ones. I am thinking especially of the yellow concrete path constructed parallell to the old National 6 road after leaving Villafrance del Bierzo and extending for about 13kms. This has been completely dammaged and I expect that most is due to the continual hitting the concrete by these poles. Tell tale streaks are left all along the Camino. I have to admit that on a couple of occasions, when we were in doubt of which path to take, we only had to look on the ground and follow the direction of the signs caused by the poles!
My request therefore, is that all who do use trekking poles make sure that they have protected the ends with the tip guards sold with the poles, and in the eventuality that these have been consumed, cover the ends with some duct-tape or bring a spare pair of protectors with you.
Anne
 

MermaidLilli

Active Member
Duct tape would never hold up, those tips are somewhat sharp. They go through the rubber tips they come with as well. Yes, the sound can be annoying. Because I was the last one to leave the albergues in the morning I was alone most of the time. That helped to keep that noise down. The only times I used them was for uphills on rocky terrain or downhills. And crossing water. I cannot understand using them on flat terrain or asphalt roads, which is where that noise is at.
Lillian
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
It´s not just the metal tipped poles that are noisy. Try sleeping a bit late in a bed near the window, very early in the morning when the "Night Flyers" are leaving the refugio. The racket they make, pounding their poles and palos, sticks and crutches, metal, wood, and ultra-titanium... enough to wake up the entire town. You probably don´t need a stick to make it down the street, people. Wait til you´re out of town to start pounding the pavement, OK?

growl.
Reb
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
don't you find it strange that their never seem to be folk who produce the snoring?

Well, I am one of them. Apparently I snore unbelievably loudly (and sometimes speak quietly and clearly in a foreign language - and not one I know) but here is a thing ... there is a new acupressure anti-snore ring on sale - I have been using one for over a week now and my snoring has disappeared.

you can buy them from http://stores.ebay.co.uk/stopsnorering

as for the spikes .. well, you can get rubber tips that have an inner metal washer and they don't wear out so easily ... but ... using one or two poles distributes weight .. how do you know that these people aren't partially disabled .. and .. ermmm ... don't they have the right to use a pole, the same way that you have the right not to use a pole - metal tip or not? :roll:

.. just imagine you are living in a flat in the noisiest working class area of a southern city ... all noise - to live there you have to let go and embrace it and it becomes wonderful and normal .. :wink:

If your main requirement on a pilgrimage is peace and quiet why on earth choose a pilgrimage that has 150,000 plus people on it?

Really, don't mean to go on but talk about splinters and planks in eyes .... :roll: :lol:
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
A contentious topic. the following is based on observation and comments received whilst walking from Le pUy to Santiago-about 1500 kms. The first trio I met were a group of Swiss ladies on day 3. during a break I asked the one with poles how she found them .She tossed them aside and said 'in my country they are just fashion' and said thay they served no useful purpose. A few days later I met a bloke who was a pilates teacher and taught bio mechanics in germany. He was not using poles and when I asked why he said that for this walk 'they are useless' and said that it was far more important to concentrate on the way you walked. I also saw many many walking on bitumen dutifully tap tapping away with their poles-to what purpose? I especially remember a group of 3 germans striding 3 abreast on a level bitumen road making an alarming noise with their 6 poles-frankly they looked ridiculous. Next was a French navy diver into extreme sports who also di not use them and he explained that they are intended for cross country skiing and unless you adopt the appropriate posture of bent kness, leaning forward and bent arms they serve no purpose.several have stated that they reduce knee pressure by 25%-where's the proof and is it a coincidence that it's always 25% and not 20% or 30%? It is also said that to get this benefit they need to be used 'properly' yet none of those I asked over 1500 kms knew what this meant. I assumed that the manufacturers would, as a matter of course, explain this but NONE had any information about using them 'correctly'-possibly because they are a complete waste of time.As for assisting in descents I saw 3 people have them arms wrenched back by getting these toys stuck in rocks. Another fellow had just bought a pair and said he did not know how to use them but 'thought they would be good' several hours later I saw him walking like a Regency gentleman walking down the strand moving each arm in a semicircle-relieving pressutre off his knees?-of course not.
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
Not contentious, just opinionated. Here is a "green" article:

Trekking Poles: Can You Save Your Knees and the Environment?
By Jeffrey L. Marion, Teresa A. Martinez, and Robert D. Proudman
Introduction
In his 1968 classic The Complete Walker, Colin Fletcher sang accolades to his trusted walking staff, noting that it transformed him “from an insecure biped into a confident triped.” He used his staff for balance and assistance in walking, something to lean on during breaks, reconnoitering for rattlesnakes, as a fishing rod substitute, and to knock rainwater from overhanging branches. Today’s technologically advanced trekking poles have been replacing such traditional hiking sticks and their use has dramatically expanded. Leki, the leading pole manufacturer, reports that while originally designed for older hikers, 70 percent of current purchases are by individuals 25 to 45 years old. Sales data and use statistics are unavailable but their use has increased dramatically in the U.S. over the past five years, trends that many expect will continue. Trekking poles have a longer history of use in European countries. Our informal polling (pun intended) within the Appalachian Trail community suggests that trekking poles are currently used by 90–95 percent of thru-hikers, 30–50 percent of short-term backpackers, and 10–15 percent of day hikers.

The increasing use of trekking poles has stimulated a growing awareness of some environmental and social impacts associated with their use, as reflected by an increasing number of “letters to editors” in magazines and e-mail traffic within the A.T. community. Those impacts have not been documented or described in the scientific literature. This article reviews the impacts of trekking pole use to provide a basis for further dialogue, and suggests how they may be altered or used in ways that will minimize impact. We also briefly describe trekking pole features and the pros and cons of their use.

Trekking Pole Features
Modern trekking poles consist of hollow, aluminum alloy tubes, which often telescope to allow compact storage and length adjustments for different users and changing terrain. At the top are ergonomic grips with adjustable wrist straps, at the base most have pointed tips of long-wearing tungsten carbide and plastic baskets to prevent deep penetration in snow or soft soil. The baskets are removable and are often available in different sizes and shapes. A rubber foot cap intended for hard surfaces, like pavement, comes with or can be purchased for most poles. Some poles incorporate springs, providing an anti-shock feature to reduce jarring on rocks or hard terrain.

Pros and Cons for Pole Users
Trekking poles provide stability in difficult terrain and stream crossings. One study found that balance was significantly enhanced by their use, so poles could help avoid injuries from falls. Some weight is transferred from users’ legs to the poles, relieving stress and possible injury to the lower back, knees, and ankles. They are a particular aid when climbing and descending hills. For example, another study reported that a typical hiker would transfer 13 tons per hour with two poles in flat terrain, 28 tons when ascending and 34 tons when descending. However, trekking poles do not reduce energy expenditures while hiking. A treadmill study showed that metabolic energy expenditures were shifted from leg to arm muscles, with no net change overall. Cardiovascular demands increased but subjects perceived their level of exertion to be lower. Poles also allowed backpackers to adopt more normal walking postures and stride lengths.

Disadvantages include their cost, ranging from $40 to $250 per pair. The poles can get in the way or be a nuisance when you need to use your hands to get something out of a pack, scramble over large rocks, or ascend a steep pitch. Finally, their added weight when not in use and the vigilance needed to guard against theft are other considerations.

Potential Environmental and Social Impacts
Despite thorough searches of the scientific literature and Internet Web sites, we were unable to locate any research that has investigated the environmental and social impacts of trekking poles. Furthermore, while there are numerous Website reviews of trekking poles, very few mention those issues and none provide more than a cursory comment. There have been some “Letters to the Editor” published in the Appalachian Trailway News (ATN), and there has been some e-mail traffic on those topics—both of which we share in this section. It is therefore important to note that our descriptions are based on personal observations, extrapolations from other visitor impact studies, and speculation regarding the “potential” impacts of trekking pole use.
Vegetation Impacts—Trailside vegetation can be damaged from the swinging action of trekking poles, particularly from contact with the baskets, which can get caught in low-growing plants. One North Carolina hiker noted in an e-mail to ATC that “the ground was becoming torn up by spiked walking poles. On the uphill side of the trail, moss and wild flowers were torn from their bedding. On the downside of the trail, parts of the trail were also torn away.” The potential consequences of such damage include a reduction or loss of vegetation cover, change in vegetation composition, and trail widening. We also note that trail maintainers generally trim only higher, overhanging vegetation, that is unaffected by trekking pole use.
Soil Impacts—A number of soil impacts could result from repeated contact and penetration by trekking pole tips. In wet or loose soils, pole tips can penetrate up to two inches and leave holes one-half inch in diameter. These holes are often V-shaped, wider at the top due to the swing of the upper pole once the tip is embedded in soil. Under some conditions, we have also seen soil lifted by pole tips and dropped on the ground surface. In a letter to the ATN, a Virginia hiker observed that trekking pole use has become nearly universal and that “These things are tearing up the trail on each side of the footpath. Some places look like they have been freshly plowed.”
Potential soil impacts from such disturbance include the loss of organic litter and exposure of soil and increased erosion and muddiness. Research is needed to document if, and to what extent, pole use could increase rates of erosion. Muddiness could develop following rainfall, when surface water runoff fills the holes created by pole tips. The increased water and soil contact in areas with high densities of holes could turn trailsides to mud, as often occurs on horse trails when water fills hoof prints. Trails that are outsloped for water drainage would not prevent such muddiness; water bars and drainage dips would prevent muddiness only on the downhill sides of trails.
Rock Impacts—The carbide tips on trekking poles leave visually obvious white scratch marks on rock surfaces and also damage lichens. A hiker in Maine related in an ATN letter that “the scratching is so pronounced on granite surfaces that it is sometimes easier to follow where the poles have been than to locate a white blaze.… [T]he scratching is something I vividly remember from my hike, so remarking about it is justified.” In an opinion letter to Backpacker magazine’s Web site, a hiker in the Adirondack’s reported that “I was upset to see all the rocks had little white marks on them. Not just a rock here or there, but all the rocks on the trail were chipped by hundreds of people... It got to the point where I could not concentrate on anything else but these thousands of little white gashes in the rocks I was stepping on. It really left a bad taste in my mouth and a grim look to the future.”
Aesthetic/Social Impacts—As demonstrated by the previous quotes from hikers, the environmental impacts of trekking poles also can be visually obtrusive to trail users. For some hikers this new form of visual impact “takes away from my experience because I feel like someone just walked by there a few minutes ago…bye-bye wilderness.” Significant impacts from heavy pole use could even make the trail more difficult to use or increase maintenance work and costs. The audible scraping noises that trekking poles make when used on hard surfaces can also be an irritant to fellow hikers. One Internet Newsgroup correspondent likened the sound to “’fingernails on a chalkboard’ when crossing rock surfaces.” Collectively, these impacts have the potential to trigger conflict between trail users, much the same as conflicts between different types of trail users (e.g., hikers, horseback riders, and mountain bike riders).
____________________
Jeff Marion, Ph.D., is a research biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey who studies visitor impacts to National Parks and other protected areas. Teresa Martinez is an associate regional representative with the Appalachian Trail Conference; and Bob Proudman is ATC director of trail management programs.
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
To clear away the ignorance on the science of trekking poles, here is an actual study with numbers, test subjects, and conclusions.

United States Sports Academy - "America's Sports University"
The Sport Journal - ISSN: 1543-9518

Load Carriage Force Production Comparison Between Standard and Anti-shock Trekking Poles
ISSN: 1543-9518
Submitted by: Bert H. Jacobson, Jennifer Kaloupek & Doug B. Smith

Abstract

Purpose: To compare the use of standard, anati-shock, and no hiking poles on medio-lateral (Fx), anaterio-posterior (Fy) and vertical (Fz) ground reaction forces for the foot and hiking poles while during load carriage walking at 0% grade. Methods: Subjects were solicited from experienced backpackers who had used hiking poles for at least 5 years. Each subject was fitted with an 18 kg internal frame backpack and allowed to practice walking with and without hiking poles to a metronome cadence equal to a walking speed of 4.42 Km.hr-1. During each successful trial the subjects contacted a piezoelectric force plate positioned in the floor with the foot and contralateral hiking pole. Three trials were conducted in random order 1) without hiking poles (NP), 2) with standard (SP) hiking poles, and 3) with anti-shock (AP) hiking poles. For each trial the following data were recorded: 1) Medio-lateral (FFx), anterior-posterior (FFx), and vertical (FFz) ground reaction force for the foot medio-lateral (PFx), anterior-posterior (PFx), and vertical (PFx) pole forces. Results: No significant differences in foot reaction forces were found among the three conditions (NP, SP, and AP) for any of the recorded dimensions (medio-lateral, anterior-posterior, and vertical). Also, no significant differences in force parameters was evident between the two types of hiking poles. Conclusion: No significant weight transfer from lower to upper body was evident regardless of pole design indicating that dependency on hiking poles during load carriage walking on level ground is negligible.

The use of hiking or trekking poles has become popular with both the weekend recreational hiker as well as the serious hiker. As early as 1996, 49% of hikers in the Austrian and Italian Alps were using "trekking poles" (Rogers et al, 1995). Over the last few years, hiking poles have evolved from simple, single walking sticks to dual, spring-loaded, telescopic poles equipped with wrist straps and carbide tips. Manufacturers of hiking poles have made largely unsupported and anecdotal claims of the benefits of employing hiking poles while hiking. Such claims as extra balance, surer walking, and reduction of stress are common (Jacobson et al, 2000). The claim supporting "reduction of stress" on lower limbs (Haid and Koller, 1995; Wilson et al, 2001) stems from the belief that part of the load is transferred from the legs to the arms and shoulders Neurether, 1981).

Previous studies involving hiking poles have included mixed protocols. For instance, some hiking poles with such names as Exerstriders® and Power PolesT are marketed for the purpose of increasing fitness parameters and caloric expenditure rather than for hiking activity by suggesting exaggerated arm swing. In a study using Power PolesT, Porcari and associates (1997) measured selected physiological variables during a 20 minute treadmill test at self selected speed and grade and found significant increases in oxygen consumption (VO2), respiratory exchange, caloric expenditure, and heart rate. In another study Rodgers and associates8 found that using Exerstriders® while walking for 30 minutes, at 6.7 km.hr-1 on 0% grade with exaggerated arm swing significantly increased VO2, and HR by 12% and 9% respectively.

However, in two separate studies utilizing hiking poles in a traditional hiking manner and without excessive arm motion, both groups of researchers found no significant differences in oxygen consumption between pole and no pole use during a 1 hr, 5% inclined treadmill walk with a 22.4 kg backpack (Knight and Caldwell, 2000) or during a 15 min. inclined (10%-25%) treadmill walk while carrying a 15 kg back pack (Jacobson et al, 2000). Also Jacobson and associates (2000) found no differences in minute ventilation (VE) or caloric consumption (Kcal.min-1 ) between pole and no pole conditions. Some authors have found greater heart rate (Neurether 1981; Procari et al, 1997; Sklar et al, 2003) with pole use, while others have reported no significant differences in heart rate between pole and no pole use (Jacobson and Wright, 1998; Jacobson et al, 2000). It has been suggested that discrepancies in results may be due to the variations in research protocols among the studies.

While there is general agreement that hiking poles do not reduce energy utilization and may, if used in an exaggerated manner, increase energy utilization as illustrated by caloric consumption, ventilation, and heart rate. With respect to rating of perceived exertion (RPE), the predominance of literature (Jacobson and Wright, 1998; Jacobson et al, 2000; Knight and Caldwell, 2000) suggest that walking with hiking poles provide an impression of reduced exertion when compared to not using hiking poles. It is possible that the perception of reduced exertion when using hiking poles results from an increase in stability provided by the additional points of contact (Neurether, 1981). Jacobson and associates (1997) found that stability and balance was significantly improved with the use of both one and two hiking poles.

Early claims that hiking poles reduces the overall stress on the limbs by transferring the weight to the arms and ultimately to the poles (Haid and Koller, 1995; Unione Internazionale, 1994) were largely unsupported until recently. Schwameder et al (1999) examined external and internal loads on the knee joint during declined (25%) walking with and without hiking poles and found significant differences in peak and average magnitudes of ground reaction forces, knee joint movement, an dtibiofemoral compressive and shear forces with pole use. Wilson and associates (2001) found a decrease in average vertical ground reaction force (Fz) while using walking poles at self-selected speeds. This decrease in vertical ground reaction force was evident for two separate poling conditions when compared to using no poles.

The purpose of this study was to compare differences in load bearing, three dimensional foot and hiking pole ground reaction force between standard, anti-shock or no hiking poles while during 0% grade walking.

Methods

Subjects:

Twelve healthy males (mean age = 35.3, SD + 10.3yr.; mean mass = 81.6, SD + 5.4 kg; mean height = 177.8, SD + 12.6 cm) with a minimum of 5 years of hiking and hiking pole experience volunteered to participate in the study. Only those subjects known as active and current hikers/mountaineers were solicited for the study and all were briefed on the protocol and signed an informed consent document approved by the University IRB committee. These subjects had no history of orthopedic pathology of lower or upper extremities and were active year-around. Following, the oral briefing, subjects' weights and heights were recorded and a medical history was obtained. No subject was unable to participate due to medical or physical constraints.

Procedure:

Subjects were tested under three randomly assigned conditions: 1) without hiking poles (NP), 2) with two standard hiking poles (SP), and 3) with two anti-shock hiking poles (AP). Subjects were instructed to maintain an easy pace to replicate a typical long-term hike. A walking speed of approximately 5.0 Kmhr-1 as determined by photo-electric cells located immediately before and after the force plate was used to standardize the pace for each trial. The testing area consisted of an18 m runway with a piezioelectric force-plate positioned midway at ground level. Pre-test trials were conducted in order to assure consistent pace and contact with the force plate by the subjects' foot and pole during testing. Subjects were instructed to walk so that pole plant coincided with contralateral heel strike (Wilson, et al. 2001).

Trials consisted of walking from each subject's predetermined starting point and culminating by walking 3 meters beyond the force plate contact. Before testing, subjects were given ample opportunity to practice walking to the cadence along the runway in order to consistently and naturally contact the force plate.

Prior to each testing session a commercially made backpack, (Gregory Mountain Products, Inc.) including a load weighing 20 kg and consisting of an internal-frame and equipped with sternum strap, hip belt, and load lifters, was individually adjusted for each subject according to the manufacturer's suggestions. Fitting the backpack involved shoulder strap adjustments to torso length, hip belt positioning, and sternum strap width and tightness. Two separate pairs of similarly weighted (~ 300 g) hiking poles, one standard pair (Cascade Designsâ Inc. Seattle, WA) and one pair with anti-shock capabilities (Leki-Sport USAâ Inc., Williamsville, NY) equipped with adjustable, telescopic sections and wrist straps, were individually fitted for each subject according to the manufacturer's recommendations and previously conducted studies ( Jacobson and Wright, 1998; Jacobson et al. 2000; Wilson et al. 2001).

Instrumentation:

A piezoelectric force plate (Kistler Instruments AG Winterthur, Schweis. 9287BA) interfaced with Bioware Analysis System Tym 2812A1-3 computer software capable of recording medio-lateral (Fx), anterior/posterior (Fy) and vertical (Fz) forces on contact was situated midway in the runway, level with the ground, and covered by a rubber mat extending the length of the runway. For each trial the following peak force data were recorded:

Foot Ground Reaction Force - Medio-lateral (FFx), anterior-posterior (FFy), and vertical (FFz).

Pole Ground Reaction Force- Medio-lateral (PFx), anterior-posterior (PFy), and vertical (PFz).

Following backpack/hiking pole fittings and practice sessions, subjects were randomly assigned to one of the three conditions (NP, SP, AP). Three successful trials were recorded for each condition for a total of nine trials. Data for each trial was spot-checked to assure consistency among results.

Statistical Analysis

Repeated measures of analysis for variance techniques were used to compare differences in medio-lateral, anterior-posterior, and vertical ground forces among the three conditions. Significant pair-wise differences were determined by the Newman-Keuls post-hoc test. An alpha level of P< 0.05 was required for statistical significance.

Results

The repeated measures analysis of variance analysis of foot ground force reaction among the three groups (NP, SP, AP) for the three dimensions (medio-lateral [FFx], anterior-posterior [FFy]and vertical [FFz]) yielded significant differences (Table 1) within the three dimensions, but no significant differences between groups (p= 0.87) and no significant interaction effect (p=0.95). Simply stated, these results indicate no modification in foot ground reactions forces for any of the pole conditions (NP, SP, or AP). Analysis of pole ground reaction force yielded significant differences (Table 2) within the three dimensions, but no significant group (SP and AP) difference (p=0.56) and no significant interaction effect (pp=0.65). These results provide no evidence that one pole design is more beneficial than the other in the transfer of ground reaction force from the foot to the pole.

Table 1

ANOVA for Foot Ground Reaction Force by Group (NP, SP, AP) and Dimension (FFx, FFy, FFz).
Source df MS F p
Within Group 2 15.2 .130 0.874
Between Group 2 315395.8 5077.044 0.000
Interaction Effect 4 10.8 .173 0.951

Table 2

ANOVA for Pole Ground Reaction Force by Group (SP, AP) and Dimension (PFx, PFy, FPz).
Source df MS F p
Within Group 1 41.49 .341 .561
Between Group 2 8404.83 105.91 0.000
Interaction Effect 2 36.12 .455 .635

Conclusions

No significant differences in foot ground reaction forces were found among the three conditions (no poles, standard poles, and anti-shock poles) for medio-lateral (Fx), anterior-posterior (Fy), or vertical (Fz) dimensions. Also, no significant force differences were found between the use of standard poles and anti-shock poles while walking on flat ground. A previous study (Schwameder et al., 1999) involving down-hill walking found significantly less peak and average magnitudes of ground reaction force was produced when walking with hiking poles in comparison to not using hiking poles. The authors concluded that the reduction of ground reaction force was primarily due to the forces applied to the hiking poles in a breaking action. Another study involving uphill walking (Knight and Caldwell, 2000) concluded that hiking pole use reduced activity in several lower extremity muscles thereby reducing stress from lower extremities. These authors also suggested that such stress reduction was because of the transfer of propulsion force from the lower to the upper extremity.

In a study using level ground walking at self-selected speeds, Wilson and associates (2001) found that "walking" poles produced significantly faster walking, greater stride length and stance time, along with an average 2.9% reduction in vertical ground reaction forces. In comparison, the current study produced smaller ground reaction force (FFz) means with the employment of either of the two hiking pole designs while walking 4.42 Kmhr-1 at 0% grade. The current study yielded a decrease in foot reaction force (FFz) of .91% for the standard poles and 1.21% while using the anti-shock poles (Figure 1). The anti-shock poles (AP) group recorded 12% greater vertical ground reaction force (PFz) when compared to the standard poles (Figure 2).
Figure 1

Figure 2

In contrast to the current study, Wilson and associates sampled novice subjects and instructed them to utilize the hiking poles in two distinct manners: 1) plant pole to coincide with contralateral foot strike, 2) same pole/foot plant with pole angled backward at ground contact, and 3) same pole/foot plant with pole angled forward at pole plant (Wilson et al, 2001). The subjects for the current study were not given special instructions on pole use, rather, subjects employed the poles with the technique they had previously developed through their outdoor hiking experiences. It appears by these data that experienced hikers depend minimally on hiking poles while walking on flat gournd, in that no significant transfer of force between upper and lower extremities was evident. In contrast to up-hill and down-hill walking which requires increased propulsion (Knight and Caldwell, 200) and breaking force (Schwameder et al, 1999) respectively, 0% grade seems to require no additional dependency on hiking poles, specifically through the transfer of force away from the lower to the upper extremities.

It is plausible that the ground reaction variables measured in the current study were compromised by the short duration of testing. In contrast to actual hiking, the average testing duration for the current study involved a practice period and thee successfully completed trials, which lasted a total of betwenn15 and 20 minutes. In normal hiking situations, the duration of walking is extended by several hours and as fatigue becomes a factor, the reliance on the hiking poles is likely to become greater in order to reduce the demand on the lower extremities. Further, greater dependency on hiking poles may become evident as the terrain changes from flat to incline, decline or lateral slant. Recommendations for future studies should encompass longer walking durations, inclined/declined walking, and lateral slant in order to more closely resemble actual hiking activity.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

Equipment furnished by Gregory Mountain Products, Inc., Cascade Designsâ Inc. Seattle, WA., Leki-Sport USAâ Inc., Williamsville, NY

REFERENCES

1. Haid C, Killer A. Hiking sticks in mountaineering. Lancet 1995; 346: 1502.

2. Jacobson BH, Caldwell B, Kulling FA. Comparison of hiking pole use on lateral stability while balancing with and without a load. Percept. Motor Skills 1997; 85: 347-350.

3. Jacobson BH, Wright TA. A field test comparison of hiking stick use on heart rate and rating of perceived exertion. Percept Motor Skills 1998; 87: 435-438.

4. Jacobson, B.H., Wright, T., and Dugan, B. Load carriage energy expenditure with and without walking poles during inclined walking. Int J Sports Med 2000; 21: 1-4.

5. Knight CA, Caldwell GE. Muscular and metabolic costs of uphill backpacking: are hiking poles beneficial? Med Sci Sports Exerc 2000; 32(12): 2093-2101.

6. Neurether G. [Ski poles in the summer.] Landesarszt der Bayerischen Bergwacht Munich Medicine Wacherts 1981; 13: 123.

7. Rodgers CD, Vanheest JL, Schachter CL. Energy expenditures during submaximal walking with Exerstridersâ. Med Sci Sports and Exerc 1995; 27: 607-611.

8. Porcari J, Hendrickson T, Walter R, Terry L, Walsko G. The physiological responses to walking with and without Power PolesT on treadmill exercise. Res Q Exerc Sports 1997;68: 161-166.

9. Roeggla M, Wagner A, Moser B, Roeggla G. Hiking sticks in mountaineering. Wild Environ Med 1996; 3: 258.

10. Schwameder H, Roithner R, Müller E, Niessen W, Raschner C. Knee joint forces during downhill walking with hiking poles. J Sports Sciences 1999; 17(12): 969-978.

11. Sklar J, DeVoe D, Gothall, R. Metabolic effects of using bilateral trekking poles whilst hiking. 2003; 44: 173-185.

12. Unione Internazionale delle Associazoni Alpinistiche Medical Commission Official Standards of the. Hiking poles in mountaineering, vol. 3. Swiss Medical Commission of UIAA, 1994.

13. Wilson J, Torry MR, Decker MJ, Kernozek T, Steadman JR. Effects of walking poles on lower extremity gait mechanics. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2001, 33(1): 142-147.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
interesting - the second report fails of course because it only measured fit people for approx 15 minutes. If there is benefit to using poles on the flat it can only be when the arm muscles are pulling/pressing on them to relieve weight/use of the legs and this will only happen with a fit person on the flat after some hours of walking - don't you think?

Has anyone asked double polers who don't use soft tips what they think about the tapping noise?
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
You can ask them, but they won´t answer. They´re plugged into their IPods. :lol:

Reb
(and no, I´m not saying handicapped people shouldn´t use their crutches! Gimme a break, guy)
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
Well....thanks Falcon for technically going into the pro's and con's of trekking poles!Considering the amount of Pilgrims who walk the Camino each year, and considering the considerable amount of people who use regularly two trekking poles, I think that we can all agree that there is a fair amount of dammage done to the paths - apart from (in my opinion) the noise!
I totally agree that there are walkers who most definaltely NEED a pole or two, due to physical conditions. We walked a while last year with a guy who had had a hip replacement operation and obviously used his poles all the way. However, there are a load of people who I am sure use them "because it's fashionable - the thing to do" Example the 3 Germans striding along the paved road!
It also seems to me that it's the younger crowd that use them. They seem to be in a great hurry and walk in a very determined manner!
Do I use a pole? Yes. We have shared one telescopic pole between the two of us and this year we will try and get one more. (one each). Adriaan uses it for going uphill and I need it for going down due to my poor eyesight. Not to mention negotiating rivers, stepping stones, mud, etc. I should also mention that we are both in the "over 65 years category"!
MermaidLilly, I mentioned duct tape, as I couldn't think of any other temporary solution. I realise that it wouldn't last too long! I guess that the ideal would be to bring along a second pair of spike protectors.
Anne
 

Arn

Veteran Member
Br. David asked:
Has anyone asked double polers who don't use soft tips what they think about the tapping noise?

As a double crutcher (not to be confused with a double clutcher) I found that the muted click of my pole hitting the ground became sort of a metronome. As I moved along I mentally counted every second click of my left pole moving from 1 up to 375. On a flat, even, surface this equated to 1 km of distance. Going up an incline, the number changed upward.

I am not a multi tasker…so while I was concentrating on my count I wasn’t paying attention to the pain in my knee (I had a knotted shoe lace in my hand that I’d move among my fingers for every 100 left paces…with a smaller knot in 25 pace intervals after the initial 300) .

From speaking with trekking pole users, I understand that many perform a similar mental exercise as they move along in a constant rhythm…clicking all the way.

As to environmental considerations, the poles themselves do make an impression on any surface they make contact with as do your tire tread hiking boots along the muddy lanes. On harder surfaces, used by both hikers and vehicles (cars, tractors and trucks) the total environmental impact is more a factor of gross weight.

But here’s my point…if you go looking for noise distractions…you will find them!

It could be snorers, folks that can’t walk without talking politics, counter religion or trekking poles! With the exception of the snorers…either you or they will move away from the distraction.

Buen “got my ear plugs in”…drat!!!...was that a truck? Camino

Arn
 

johnBCCanada

Active Member
Hi

At different times last year I used no poles, a single wooden pole and a pair of lightweight modern poles with the rubber 'feet". I think the rubber "feet" worked best as they had less endency to skate on rocks.

What I don't understand is the issue. Yes metal feet of poles may make some small marks and some small noise but then so do we all in passing by. People snore and yet after the first night I was tired and they didn't keep me up. Some of the food was not what I would have chosen (so many french fries!) but this was all trivial. The places and the the people and the experiences were wonderful and memorable and were so much greater than the tiny irritations that I don't understand spending time on those very small things that were not as I/we might have liked.

John
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Another reason I don't like these poles is the relatively common practice I saw on the CF of vigorously prodding the tip at the distance markers with the blue/yellow shell tile. Of course the result was that many tiles were either fractured or completely smashed. I saw this several times-especially when one person did it those behind seemed compelled to follow suit-a case of monkey see monkey do.Is this supposed to be another camino 'tradition'-or just vandalism?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
those responses above about just getting on with it and not moaning are how I feel about it but I am so pugnacious sometimes (being brought up by a Gorbals Catholic and an East End Jew both of whom loved to debate - or argue! I suppose)

I had a knotted shoe lace in my hand that I’d move among my fingers for every 100 left paces…with a smaller knot in 25 pace intervals after the initial 300[
- Crikey - how close is that to a rosary!! - :shock:

I do remember, back in the early 70's, going to live in Aix-en-Provence with a pal - because it was full of chicks from all over the world (which is how we spoke and thought then) ... two cool hippies, we got a job on a building site outside of town, a couple of mopeds and a first floor flat in the Arab quarter in the square which held the flower market. Until we got used to it we were so tired getting home that the noise was difficult .. then we had a couple of days off and invited to parties and had our own (the one with the guy with the loaded hand-gun who had gone drug induced-paranoic was an interesting one) and got used to it all and everywhere there were people snoring, arguing, falling in love, calling out for their children, laughing, crying, having deep sonorous discussions, playing chess .. people sat out on the benches and watched the world go by .. and when we dropped our 'englishness' and joined in it became just ... well, wonderful really, utterly wonderful - life! living breathing messy sweaty noisy illogical life!

Awareness ... having a body that thinks and feels and is overrun, overwhelmed by beauty and living laughter and tragedy .. all that time in the empty unknowing dark and then we come into this, this .. banqueting hall - and where else would you be? Think about it for a moment - where else would you be? So I get a little grumpy when people complain about noises and snoring and so on . (and no one has mentioned how much the Spanish groups talk yet!) - the thing is to dive in, let go, stop being precious - live!

anyway, that's how I feel about it - just a point of view ... :| :wink:
 

colinPeter

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SDC (2009) Somport-Jaca, Burgos-SDC, Cee-Muxia (2012) Le Puy - Aumont-Aubrac (2014) SJPP-SDC (Oct 2015)

Arn

Veteran Member
Br. David exclaimed: Crikey - how close is that to a rosary!!

About three feet away...in my other hand!

Col added: Has anyone walked with the traditional pilgrim staff?

I did not see a lot of traditional staffs along the first 400 km...then within 100km of Santiago they began to sprout like weeds.

I'd ask Gareth to comment on the overall experience of a long pilgrimage using a traditional staff.

Buen "just sticking my nose in" Camino
Arn
 

Deirdre

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (2007), Camino Francés (2008), Camino Portugués (2010), Camino Aragonés - from Lourdes (2012)
I used one traditional walking staff - thanks, Reb.
Buen Camino,
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
I tried a traditional walking staff on my first walk - first day out from Roncevalles. I bought it from an old guy selling them over his garden wall in one of the villages we came through. I think it cost 5 euros. But, yes, it had a metal tip. However at that stage I was not aware of possible dammage to the trails, or anything else. This is a fact that I only became aware of as the days passed. My problem then was that I didn't know what do do with it, when I really didn't need it - and that was frequently! It's heavier and more cumbersome too. I prefer a light weight telescopic pole because it's easier fold away to carry on your pack when not needed.
Anne
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
We have a full selection of all kinds of walking sticks, poles, and crutches, abandoned accidentally and on-purpose by a variety of pilgrims. We keep them circulating, though -- if you´re leaving here and feel the need of an extra leg, you can help yourself to one of the gang gathered ´round the door.

Personally, when I hike I use a waist-high stick of shellacked hardwood with "Burgos" carved into it. It´s got a wrist-loop too. No metal tip. No noise. God knows who it really belongs to. Patrick, who has a bad ankle, uses a hi-tech titanium telescoping anti-shock pole someone else left behind, because he likes the hand grip. God knows what it cost, back when someone paid money for it.

Which is all to say: Unless you´re handicapped or really attached to your sticks, wait til you get to Spain and pick one up from your nearest pilgrim stop. Evidently they are expendable.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
I took one telescopic walking pole (about 15 euro) on the Via Francigena and ended up buying a bamboo pole as well.
There were a number of occasions where I was extremely grateful for them both!
 

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A

Anonymous

Guest
I think Sil's pics make the case, don't you?

and Rebeka's collection - you'll be pleased to hear that psychologists say that leaving something behind after a visit means the person liked being there so much they want to go back there again :wink:
(though I don't know if that works with umbrellas and trains ....)
 

jeff001

Active Member
Sil's pictures do make the case - for the conditions she was using the poles in. But those conditions are few (if ever) and far between on the Camino Fraces or Portugese that I walked. For every meter of these difficult conditions there are tens of thousands of flat conditions where the poles are of no real use. If you know that you need them by all means use them but otherwise they are not a necessity.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Sorry Jeff - that is what I meant .. for up and down and treacherous conditions ...

I went over the Napoleon pass in quite a lot of snow - I really needed my pole then. And .. somewhere ... huge motorway works and the camino was up and down and all over, on loose and muddy red earth - needed a pole there as well - and bits of Galicia in the rain? So, I agree with you to a degree but think there are plenty of sections where a pole can be a real ankle saver.

Oh - and some mountain farm somewhere where the only thing that stopped a dog continuing an attack on me was that I really went at it with my pole.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
As I recall, the tips on the palos sold locally also have metal tips? :roll:
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Have been watching the snow in the UK on the news-funnily enough no one seems to be using walking sticks
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
Only the young are out in the snow, and they suffer from the hubris of youth.
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
So only the young have to go to work?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
So only the young have to go to work?

Oh absolutely! Didn't you know? In the UK only those between the ages of 23 and 37 have to work. Everyone else is paid 85% of the national average wage plus sundry other benefits - free medical care, free housing, free holidays four times a year, free travel on public transport and - and this is a fun benefit - one day in every month the Queen invites fifty people at random (of the non-workers) to tea at Windsor Castle - and she does the pouring!

Being the fifth largest economy in the world (our GNP on our tiny island is larger than the whole of the continent of African countries combined, including Egypt and South Africa) we can afford to have tens of millions of apparently idle citizens (except that we aren't citizens of course but happy and contented subjects of the Queen).
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Baston? Baston? Monsieur Baston of the French Embassy? In public? With his metal tip? Quelle Finnesse!
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
Gee, Br. David...
My stepson in Bournemouth just was put on a four-day workweek. I´ll let him know all he´s gotta do now that he´s 40-something is fill in some forms and life will be fine! Why´d he keep working all these years?

Reb
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Yes, joking aside, it is getting a bit grim over here Rebeka - and many are quite idle now with more to come .... latest news (a few minutes ago on national TV) is that the Royal Bank of Scotland, which was given billions to keep it afloat, which makes it part-nationalised of course and owned by those very same newly unemployed people, has just said it needs to pay out just over ONE BILLION (£) in bonuses ... :shock:

bonuses? what a strange world we inhabit.

how is it down your part of the world? (at least you have your own wine to drink!)
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Speaking of grim.Yesterday in Victoria we had our hottest day since 1850's-46.4 degrees with one or two places just north of me in Melbourne reaching over 47. 25 large bushfires throughout the state, one quite large town virtually destroyed,25 dead (expected to exceed 40), 3000 firefighters,over 500 fire trucks,30+ planes/helicopters all with 100kmh+ winds.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Crikey! - I can't make jokes out of that ... that is really rather serious isn't it - and isn't your country in the grip of an 8 year drought as well? So what happens when the water runs out? Just end up clinging to the fertile eastern rim?
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
I suppose I'm getting a bit off topic but 'up north' in Queensland they have had record floods but in Victoria and many other parts of the country we have record droughts-Melbourne reservoirs down to 30% capacity and some regional towns have had to get their water tanked in.
 

Alan Pearce

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009, VdlP 2011, Ingles 2014, Camino de Madri 2015, Frances 2017
Hi colinPeter
I walked the Aragones last year as a 60 year old with a staff, and was very grateful that I did. As other posts have said, it was really useful in the steep and muddy areas [both descending and ascending]. Also walking on the frozen snow as I walked down from Somport. I took one from Australia with me, and it was 165 cm high, just shorter than my height of 170 cm. Where I grasped the staff I put on a hockey stick grip, one of those cloth ones that are adhesive on the inner side, and wrapped it several times around the staff so I could get a good grip on it. On the majority of the walk where walking conditions were benign I used it to set a tempo for my walking pace that day.
I did have a bit of trouble getting it back into Australia, as customs wanted me to pay $30 to have it sterilized, but in the end they let it through as it was. The other trouble I experienced with it was when it was stolen from the wall of an albergue where it was leaning. As it had an Australian aaboriginal design painted on it, it was fairly distinctive. I got it back when we found it being carried by a "pilgrim" in the cathedral in Compostela.
Buen Camino
Alan
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
JohnnieWalker said:
Br. David said:
Baston? Baston? Monsieur Baston of the French Embassy? In public? With his metal tip? Quelle Finnesse!

No, no, Señor Bastón of the Spanish Embassy please. I was using a bastón not a bourdon. :)

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: Parfait! or should I say Perfecto!
 

jl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances('05, '07), Aragonese ('05), del Norte / Primitivo ('09), Via Tolosana (Toulouse '05), Via Podiensis (Le Puy '07), Via Lemovicensis (Troyes '09), VF ('12), Winter Camino ('13/'14) Cammino d'Assisi ('14) Jakobseweg (Leipzig - Paris '15) San Salvador/Norte ('15) Ignaciano ('16) Invierno ('16)
large bushfires throughout the state, one quite large town virtually destroyed,25 dead (expected to exceed 40)

Just an amendment to Omar's post. Sadly the death toll has risen to 84 with many more injured and some of those on the critical list. There are over 700 homes razed plus schools telephone exchanges and other infrastructure destroyed. One wonders how many forum members / watchers are affected in some way. A sad day and traumatic day indeed for so many.
 

colinPeter

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SDC (2009) Somport-Jaca, Burgos-SDC, Cee-Muxia (2012) Le Puy - Aumont-Aubrac (2014) SJPP-SDC (Oct 2015)
Hi Alan,

Glad to hear you eventually "retrieved" your staff.

I guess you cant judge a "pilgrim" by the staff/pole(s) they carry, as it may not be theirs'.

Col
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Must have been an excellent moment when you got it back!

Apart from a staff I also wear a small and lightning conductor ... as they comfort me (my rod and my staff) .........
 

Trudy

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2006) Roncesvalles to Leon (2007) Leon to Compostela
I use two trekking poles on the Camino and would never attempt the Camino without them. Having arthritis in both knees, and poor balance, the poles have saved me on many occasions, particularly in the first two days from Roncesvalles! They're also good to lean on going uphill.

However, I cannot abide the clicking sound these poles make, so always use them with rubber stoppers on the end. They work just as well in all conditions, and I just can't understand why others don't do this. I remember walking behind a woman for many kilometres, over flat terrain, and she was alternately clicking the poles or dragging them behind her. She was walking just a tiny bit faster than me so I couldn't overtake and escape from the sound.

I know I really should try to overcome my irritability with these things, we all have little idiocyncracies that annoy others, but it just irks me when people don't think about the consequences of their actions - however small.

Trudy
 

Deirdre

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (2007), Camino Francés (2008), Camino Portugués (2010), Camino Aragonés - from Lourdes (2012)
I know this is a little off topic, but nothing could be worse than the two "twenty something" pilgrims who, like the aforementioned, were walking just a tad faster than I so I couldn't overtake for ages... and one had a little bell on her rucksack! It tinkled, then rang, then jangled and finally BANGED and CLANGED with every single step she took! :evil:
They walked faster than I, but their packs were too heavy so they stopped every .5 km or so to rest and I would catch up - I even tried to walk slower to get away from the noise! It was my penance in tranquil eucalyptus forests of Galicia! Finally, on a very steep hill, I was able to out-climb them - the upside to 3.5 weeks of walking! ANd then, once in front, I nearly ran - pack and all- to escape the noise! I can't imagine what possessed her to attach a bell to her pack!!!! :roll:
To take a page from Arn's book...
Buen, peacefully silent, Camino,
 

Arn

Veteran Member
Deirdre commented OUT LOUD!: I can't imagine what possessed her to attach a bell to her pack!!!!

Maybe the bell came with the pack and she was afraid to take it off...like those tags on pillows and mattresses that say..."Do not remove under penalty of ...whatever"

Or maybe, if you do get ahead of her...it reinforces an urge to get going again before she catches up.

Or maybe it's to keep the elephants away...you didn't see any did you? It works!

Buen Camino,

Arn
 

colinPeter

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SDC (2009) Somport-Jaca, Burgos-SDC, Cee-Muxia (2012) Le Puy - Aumont-Aubrac (2014) SJPP-SDC (Oct 2015)
Trudy said:
I use two trekking poles on the Camino
.... so always use them with rubber stoppers on the end.

I'm planning on using the "rubber stoppers" on my poles, and was interested to know if the "rubber tips" would last all the way from SJPP to Santiago?

Col
 

jl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances('05, '07), Aragonese ('05), del Norte / Primitivo ('09), Via Tolosana (Toulouse '05), Via Podiensis (Le Puy '07), Via Lemovicensis (Troyes '09), VF ('12), Winter Camino ('13/'14) Cammino d'Assisi ('14) Jakobseweg (Leipzig - Paris '15) San Salvador/Norte ('15) Ignaciano ('16) Invierno ('16)
no / or just Col, the rubber tips don't last all the way (but nearly) to Santiago. Some are harder / tougher than others and therfore do last longer. Last time I walked from Le Puy and the rubber tip had worn out by the time I got to St Jean, and then again by the time I got to Sanitago. With care though, I could still walk silently - or as silently as my heavy footfalls would allow. I must say that I used to take great delight in playing a game with the pole clickers and draggers (which are probably worse, especially on the cobblestones). I was often in the position of catching up the noisy ones and would take great delight (not a charitable action I must admit!) in starling them as a walked briskly and silently past! I had hoped that my demonstraion would serve as a role model, but I am afraid that it probably had no effect as they would often be making such a racket with the click clacking of their poles they would not be able to hear how quietly I was walking! Oh well I did but try! Cheers, Janet
 

colinPeter

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SDC (2009) Somport-Jaca, Burgos-SDC, Cee-Muxia (2012) Le Puy - Aumont-Aubrac (2014) SJPP-SDC (Oct 2015)
jl said:
… the rubber tips don't last all the way (but nearly) to Santiago.
Thanks Janet I’ll bring a “two pack”
jl said:
…I was often in the position of catching up the noisy ones and would take great delight (not a charitable action I must admit!) in starling them as a walked briskly and silently past!

Now to find someone slower than me, to whoosh past under a cloak of silence.

Col
 

Caminamos

New Member
I did the camino in 2002 and I STILL remember how annoying it was being followed on concrete paths for several miles by a double-trekking-pole-wielding man who had no rubber stoppers. It's true of course that the camino is in some way 'about' letting those small things that annoy us slide away ... but I think regardless of the debate on whether poles work, if you ARE going to use them, put the stoppers on. I work in a trekking gear shop, and the principle of the metal tip is to dig in to soft sand, not for use on concrete or bitumen. Also, there's really no need for them on such surfaces (even and flat)! Having said that, I started with no walking stick but picked one up in a park outside Logrono. There was a gent there (Mariano?) who apparently spent many days there giving out sticks of willow (?) and also plying pilgrims with fresh fruit. Did anyone else encounter him? That first day with it was the worst for me on the camino - I had pain that stretched from my heels to my buttocks, and I used the stick so much I had blisters on my hand! A lovely fellow pilgrim carved a little space on the stick for my wounded hand the next day (the wood was completely rough). That walking stick never left my side, despite having to take a bus and train to O Cebreiro with a 6 foot stick!
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
what a lovely story (except for the blisters) ... perhaps we should all take a bag of rubber ends and make a point of handing them out? :roll:
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Or maybe have a nice bonfire withy those annoying gimmicks
 

johnBCCanada

Active Member
or maybe just please forget about them! I started without them and hurt myself and they helped me walk. I suspect for many others they aren't physicaly necessary or maybe even physically beneficial but if they give a psychological boost then fine.

The Camino is something entirely new for many people and if sticks give them the physical assist or the confidence to make it happen then great.

john
 

lorax

Member
Camino(s) past & future
I tried in 09, it went horribly. Gonna try again. Aug/Sept this year
Howdy all...


I guess I hadn't thought about the noise my trekking poles make... I'm just really thankful that I found them. I have wanted to walk the Camino since I first read Shirley McLaine's book years and years ago. My children were young then and we were just barely surviving. I KNEW there was no way. Now the kids are grown, money is still tight making our kids lives wonderful...but I am able to finally fulfill this dream of mine. Sadly though... my body is not as healthy as I would like. I had a stroke two years ago this May and it hit my "balance point". Although I think I came through that pretty well due to a large group of healers...I can be walking and just feel like I'm falling over....thus... I love my poles. I do use the rubber tips so I don't notice much noise. I hope that my poles don't offend anyone... I'm just very thankful to have them. I've worried and still worry despite many hours walking that I will be able to make this journey. I'm scared that I won't be able to...and even more afraid of dying while there... I don't want this dream of mine to become a nightmare for my family and even the other pilgrims. I read the stories of people who have died doing the trek and how it affects everyone on here.

I will make sure that I have an extra set of rubber tips with me to have as little an impact as I can. Sadly, I'm also a snorer and am trying to figure out something I can do/buy to make sure I snore as little as possible. I hope people are patient. I don't want to be that person that everyone makes jokes about and want to walk as fast as possible to get away from.

I'm taking the full 90 days in Europe to be able to go at my own pace (slow) and have the best Camino I can. I'm pretty sure it will be a "once in a lifetime" deal.

Blessings all.....

Karla
 

jl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances('05, '07), Aragonese ('05), del Norte / Primitivo ('09), Via Tolosana (Toulouse '05), Via Podiensis (Le Puy '07), Via Lemovicensis (Troyes '09), VF ('12), Winter Camino ('13/'14) Cammino d'Assisi ('14) Jakobseweg (Leipzig - Paris '15) San Salvador/Norte ('15) Ignaciano ('16) Invierno ('16)
Hello Karla, Try not to worry about your Camino. It sounds like you are doing the right things in preparation, and so go, and enjoy your journey!. Yes, there are some things that are annoying (like clicking poles) but - we as pilgrims can do a lot to prevent that sort of thing, and if we have done all we can that is reasonable then it is up to others to be accepting of each others foibles, and allow each of us the opportunity to have the best Camino we are able. You sound as if you are considering others in your preparation which is all any one can ask. You will have plenty of time to walk your journey too, to enjoy all the sights, sounds and smells along the way. I hope that it is as fulfilling for you as you wish it to be. kind regards, Janet
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Ho Karla - good post! - you sound a pretty thoughtful sort of person anyway ... thing to remember is that this forum - and therefore the views you read on it - represents just a tiny tiny handful of pilgrims (and some on here aren't pilgrims at all, in the religious sense, they just like walking and posting).

My children are grown and flown, which allowed me some years ago to enter the fourth stage of life, something I had put off for years and years - but a few years ago when my daughter suddenly realised about mortality she made me carry a note in my wallet "in case of accident please contact ... etc" - which is still there, just in case ... :lol: :lol:
Your fear of dying 'out there' is not too uncommon a feeling if a parent, especially if a loving one, and especially so in your case I should think. But what would they say and think if you did? "So glad it was on the Camino, it was always her dream to do it" ? "So happy that she was on her pilgrimage when she went. " Things like that?

The last couple of deaths over the last couple of years were in snow on very high ground. People ignoring the dangers that mountains represent, ignoring conditions, and not knowing what to do when conditions became bad (stop, shelter, and wait). Thing is though Karla - folk do die out there of, well, just death. I remember sitting on a bench that was put there in rememberence of someone who had a heart attack and died ...
so ... say 140,000 pilgrims ... how many people in a town of 140,000 would you expect to have accidents, illnesses, and even die - in even just one weekend? I think that the Caminos are safer than that town of comparable size, don't you?

The Camino is a place to experience on many levels and we seem to draw, or are given, some kind and interesting people as our helpmates on the way. Judging by your post I should think that some rather lovely companions are being lined up for you already!.

You will be fine, whatever happens, - and your family love you - you are blessed already.

Snoring? - try the snore ring - works for me - http://www.stopsnorering.com/ - no, really. It really works.
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
I hope that my poles don't offend anyone.

Let's be honest. Your very existence offends some people! You are intruding on THEIR Camino, and that offends them. Do not worry about the clicking of your trekking poles. Use rubber tips on paved surfaces. Use the metal tips on soil, particularly wet soil where the the rubber tips will slip. If someone is mightily offended by the clicking, they always can drop back twenty paces where they won't hear a thing. The problem is theirs, not yours.
 

colinPeter

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SDC (2009) Somport-Jaca, Burgos-SDC, Cee-Muxia (2012) Le Puy - Aumont-Aubrac (2014) SJPP-SDC (Oct 2015)
Hi Karla,
falcon269 said:
Let's be honest..... The problem is theirs, not yours.
Good advice.
lorax said:
Sadly, I'm also a snorer .....
You and millions of others. Be considerate, do what you can, ie sleep on your side, use any gizmos and tricks you know, but don't be sad.
Col
 

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