Stronger Legs for Higher Peaks

Written by Becky

It is likely obvious to most that if you want to be able to hike your way to the top of a mountain, from the small hills in park Gatineau to even bigger mountains like the PCT Trail, Adirondacks or even Mount Kilimanjaro, you need to prepare your body. If you have been spending hours planning and preparing your hiking trips but haven’t spent any time prepping your body for your trips this is a good place to start. In order to tackle steep ascents, balance rocky downhill climbs and log up to 20 plus kilometers a day you need to have the muscle strength and endurance to do so. The deadlift is an excellent exercise to start with that you will want to add to your training program.

Why the deadlift? The basis of the deadlift is the “hip hinge” which is an important movement for everyone, I stress, everyone should learn the proper movement pattern of. Being able to perform a proper hip hinge will allow you to properly move through lifting a pen off the floor to some serious strength training without hurting your back or your knees. The deadlift is also an excellent exercise to strengthen your hamstrings and glutes (muscles on the back of your leg and your bum) which if you want to hike further or climb higher will be essential.

This video shows how to correctly perform the hip hinge then progress to the romanian deadlift and single leg deadlift when you are ready for an added challenge. Remember hiking is a unilateral movement, one foot in front of the other so if you are looking to advance your workouts for more challenging hiking trips you might want to make it your goal to be able to correctly perform a single leg deadlift and add it into your training.

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