Sunday, 28 February 2010

Hiking - the stress reliever

Hiking is a natural stress reliever in so many ways. The very word "hiking" infers heading out to a mountainous terrain or a thickly wooded river valley. Not only does going for a hike give you abundant physical exercise, but it also provides the psyche with a much needed escape into a more peaceful setting where one's senses are inundated by the soft scents, sights and sounds of nature.

Hiking is more than just going out for a walk or a jog. It entails strenuous trail trekking over hill and dell where the entire body is utilized in the activity. Serious hiking challenges the heart and the muscles more readily because of the constant change in land grade and the continuous maneuvering over, under and around obstacles. Getting away for a country hike is can be much more enjoyable than a fast-paced walk or a jog in the city for one very simple reason. Getting out to the country means filling your lungs and cells with fresher air and purer oxygen.

The family unit can also benefit a great deal by heading out for a hike together as long as your hike doesn't include dangerous terrain. It's a great activity that involves everyone, gets the kids out to use pent up energy and it provides the enjoyment of seeing a variety of birds, animals, plants and trees. These experiences can then be taken back home and talked about for days, weeks and years to come.

When planning a hiking trip it is essential to wear the proper clothing and carry the proper gear. Temperature and climate changes can and do occur so you will want to wear clothing that can be taken off when exertion produces sweat and then reapplied when you or the environment begins to cool down. Wearing zip off trousers are ideal for hiking as the legs can be removed when hot and put back on when things cool down. Also, carrying a light jacket in a lightweight backpack or fanny pack is a good idea.

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