While hiking isn’t typically seen as a particularly dangerous activity, there are many ways a person can become injured on a hike. Luckily, many of the most common hiking injuries are the result of a lack of preparation. This means they’re easily preventable and shouldn’t pose a significant threat to hikers.
One of the most common injuries hikers endure is foot pain. Walking across rough terrain can cause painful blisters and sores, as well as increasing the odds of slipping, which can lead to ankle sprains. Making sure to have a good pair of hiking boots that offer ankle support can reduce the severity of both of these injuries. Additionally, using a walking stick can help take some of the strain off your feet, improve your balance, and even add a bit of an upper body workout to your hike.
Avoiding sunburns is important as well. Hikers should always wear appropriate sunscreen, including when it is cold out. Similarly, temperature regulation should not be taken lightly. Even on hot days, a sweaty hiker can become hypothermic with a strong enough breeze. Heat strokes and dehydration can also occur on tough, long hikes. Hikers should be sure to stay hydrated. One way to do this is to take a water break every half hour or so. The goal here should be to prevent becoming thirsty.
Hiking is a wonderful way to get exercise while being close to nature. Remember to tell someone where you’re going beforehand and when you’ll be back and pack a first aid kit in case of emergencies. Taking the extra precautions to stay safe during your hike may seem somewhat unnecessary, but in the event that something goes wrong, you’ll be glad you did.