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How to use your trekking pole strap
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Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: How to use your trekking pole strap on 04/04/2014 00:55:29 MDT Print View

Franco's video was very short and sweet. That is a very natural way to use poles, speaking as a cross country skier.

There was one important thing left out of the video. The cat! The cat generally walks around and makes a nuisance of itself. Is the cat on strike?


Michael Gunderloy
(ffmike) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Hmmm... now I'm more confused than ever on 04/04/2014 04:44:09 MDT Print View

There are poles and poles...with the Pacerpoles (at the risk of sounding like an advertisement) the grip is so large and so well-shaped for my size hands (average-ish, size L gloves) that I get plenty of weight transfer with a light grip. My arm muscles get plenty of workout so they must be doing something.

I'd think for more "normal" poles that size, placement, and width of strap would be pretty important variables too. Sounds like an article waiting to be written here.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Hmmm... now I'm more confused than ever on 04/04/2014 15:45:34 MDT Print View

"If you do NOT use straps, do you place your thumbs over the tops of the poles?"


You seem to have pretty strong hands, so I'd suggest you try cupping the top of the handle in your palm going both up and down. If you plant the poles almost alongside your hips going up, and have the length properly adjusted, you should be able to generate plenty of force to offload some of the effort from your quads onto your triceps, lats, posterior deltoids. It won't replace your quads, obviously, but it will ease their load a bit, which I have found makes a difference over the course of a long day. When cupping, you will be able to control the planting of your poles with your thumbs and ring/pinky fingers. All in all, I have found it to be a lot easier on my forearms and wrists, not to mention eliminating strap chafing on the back of the hand, which is a real PITA in hot weather/dusty conditions. If it doesn't work out, you can always go back to straps, but it might be worth at least a try. If you do end up adopting the technique, it would be useful to attach a retainer cord with a hand loop to each pole. You can make them from 2-4 mil Perlon, Kelty Triptic, or just about any light cordage. Shouldn't weigh more than a few grams each.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: @Tarptent
How to use your trekking pole strap on 04/04/2014 18:46:41 MDT Print View

I had Lucy for almost 21 years, she adopted use when abondoned and pregnant with Pip , her daughter, who lived for 18.5 years.
They are both resting now.
My pet goldfish, maybe 15, is still swimming in a pond behind the table...
(swimming is what he does best...)
I now have two cats visiting, one is a very cute Russian Blue and the other is her grumpy boyfriend.
No I don't feed them but they still visit..
Last night I had 3 ring tail possums making a hell of a racket on my roof so I went out and had a word with them.
They stopped.
Maybe I can talk to animals...
Back to the scheduled programme.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: How to use your trekking pole strap on 04/04/2014 18:54:46 MDT Print View

Never used them on the poles, but I had poles that included them, so I made some MYOG banana slings with them and a bit of cuben. That's not weird, is it?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: How to use your trekking pole strap on 04/04/2014 19:34:36 MDT Print View

"That's not weird, is it?"

I'd probably think so if I knew what they were.

Glenn S

Locale: Snowhere, MN
Re: Re: Re: How to use your trekking pole strap on 04/04/2014 22:21:33 MDT Print View

Well it's worth a try. I'll have to use my adjustable Lekis though. I bought new BD Zpoles on clearance this winter and am dying to get them out too. I'm really comfortable at about a 115cm, so I had to size up to the 120's, which I doubt would work good for palming on flat ground.

Looks like I have lots to play with this year!

I'll let you know how it goes Tom.

Edited by Glenn64 on 04/06/2014 00:29:50 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: How to use your trekking pole strap on 04/05/2014 17:42:36 MDT Print View

"Well it's worth a try"


I'd be interested to know how it works, or doesn't, for you. Would you please let me know?

alan genser
(alan) - F

Locale: NE
straps/no straps on 06/04/2014 21:07:45 MDT Print View

hadn't been backpacking in while. did the burroughs range loop in the catskills the other weekend with a new set of poles. found i wasn't really liking the straps.

i also found myself 'palming' the grips, mostly lightly holding the top of the pole between my thumb and ring finger to pivot, while slight inputs from my first and second finger helped 'steer' the pole.

it was asked above what the usefulness of poles was, when being used in this manner.

i think people using poles in this manner are being much more deliberate and light on their feet, using the poles for pacing and proprioceptive information (balance).

"A series of studies have shown that sensory input to the hand and arm through contact cues at the fingertip or through a cane can reduce postural sway in individuals who have no impairments and in patients without a functioning vestibular system, even when contact force levels are inadequate to provide physical support of the body."

( )

after leaving my set of rei traverse poles at the trailhead (a blessing in disguise) i've got a pair of cp3's, and a set of gg cork grips on the way. i'll be going strapless for my next trip, a presidential range traverse, in a couple weeks.

Jake D
(JakeDatc) - F

Locale: Bristol,RI
Re: straps/no straps on 06/04/2014 21:44:42 MDT Print View

That is how I use my poles.. like a mogul skier tapping out in front lightly until i need more support for balance. I have BD Carbon Alpines that are light in my hand and swing easily with just a few fingers holding the grips. Using them this way I can walk quickly, letting my feet go back and forth across the trail around obstacles and letting my hands keep balance.

Alan have fun in the Presi's.. I was on Franconia ridge a few weekends ago and it was great as usual.