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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Treking Pole Straps cause blisters

    I just got my first pair of trekking poles, read up on how to use them, watched the videos on how to wear the straps and set out of my first hike with poles. After about two miles I started to get blisters on my thumbs. What am I doing wrong?

  2. #2
    Registered User Elder's Avatar
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    Type of pole /strap? You will get a little wear usually between the thumb and forefinger, in the "web"...but you have to touch them somewhere.
    If your thumb is rubbing on the grip..I'd suggest tighten the strap a little. And relax, let the strap support your hand.
    Of couse, thats for Leki's and a very few others..
    part of what you pay for.
    "Just cut them off" is the wrong answer..as soon cut your shoelaces..

    Yes, I am the Leki guy.
    "You don't have to think fast if you move slow" Red Green

  3. #3
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    Mine occasionally cause hot spot on the inside of my thumb if the strap gets twisted or bunched up and I don't realize it. I take extra care to make sure that the strap lays flat against my skin and I frequently adjust my grip slightly to vary the pointof contact. Just payng a little attention I haven't had any problems for quite a while. Alterntaively you could put a small peice of tape or moleskin where the hop spot develops.

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    I don't quite get where your blisters are on your thumbs, but either way, there's something wrong. If it's the straps rubbing, there's obviously way to much pressure and rubbing. I don't use my straps most of the time, but if I do, they're loose enough that they are only effective if I'm ascending - the pole is high in front of me and I'm bearing down with my wrist on the strap for extra leverage as I push and pull down on the pole, if you will.

    If you're getting blisters from the handle, I imagine that you're simply holding them too tightly. I hold mine just tight enough so that my hands don't slip on the grip when I don't want them to; my hands get very sweaty so I need to be careful with the friction, but have never had a problem with blisters.

    Of course, if you've sensitive skin and you're rubbing an area that is not used to it, it may just be a matter of time and slowly conditioning that area.

  5. #5
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    The weight that you put on the poll should go through your wrist/wriststrap into the poll and to the ground--it shouldn't even make it to your hands. Grip the poll very lightly with your hand.

  6. #6

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    duct tape your thumbs

  7. #7
    Registered User Driver8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdjclark View Post
    I just got my first pair of trekking poles, read up on how to use them, watched the videos on how to wear the straps and set out of my first hike with poles. After about two miles I started to get blisters on my thumbs. What am I doing wrong?
    I wear bicycle gloves. Gotta wash them now and then b/c they can get pretty funky, but they protect my hands nicely.
    The more miles, the merrier!

    NH4K: 21/48; N.E.4K: 25/67; NEHH: 28/100; Northeast 4K: 27/115; AT: 124/2191

  8. #8
    Registered User canoehead's Avatar
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    I use and love my hiking poles but I don't use the straps while hiking. If I'm out backcountry skiing then I will use the strap otherwise just go strapless. I won't hurt...

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leanthree View Post
    The weight that you put on the poll should go through your wrist/wriststrap into the poll and to the ground--it shouldn't even make it to your hands. Grip the poll very lightly with your hand.
    +1 The straps should be on your wrist and bear the bulk of the weight. Just give it some trial and error and you will find what is comfortable for you.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

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    Default Can I buy replacement straps?

    Quote Originally Posted by hdjclark View Post
    I just got my first pair of trekking poles, read up on how to use them, watched the videos on how to wear the straps and set out of my first hike with poles. After about two miles I started to get blisters on my thumbs. What am I doing wrong?

    Can I buy replacement straps? Maybe the big cushy ones?

  11. #11

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    I reach thru the straps (like cross-country skiing) rather than laying the strap across the web of my hand (like downhill skiing). That works for me. On flat terrain, I don't use poles at all, but there's not a lot of flat terrain.
    virgil

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    A few have already said this but the weight should be on your wrist via the straps{at least the way i use them}.I dont even grip the handles with my hands,they just kind of rest in my hands.I cant remember if i started out using them that way,or had to get a feel for them.Maybe you just need i little more time with them?Good luck
    I walk up hills,and then walk down

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    I did not read the entire thread but: I love my poles but never use the straps! Straps are just a security blanket. This started 20 yrs ago as a ski patroller, if a pole gets stuck it can pull you off balance, I just stop and retrieve it. I grip my poles lightly during normal hiking if the pole get stuck in a rock or root, no broken pole or jerked arm or being thrown off balance it just stays there and my arm continues to swing. If going downhill I grip the top of the pole if going up I just tighten the grip. Works for me.

  14. #14

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    Chop firewood with an ax, problem fixed.




    You're welcome.

  15. #15
    Registered User Lyle's Avatar
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    Get PacerPoles

  16. #16
    Registered User Summit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdjclark View Post
    Can I buy replacement straps? Maybe the big cushy ones?
    I have a pair of twist lock REI poles with thin nylon straps and a pair of Black Diamond flic locks with "cushy straps." It's the cushy straps that give me the most rubbing/blister problems. Duct tape's the best solution. Pay no heed to those recommending not to use the straps. The straps should be bearing your weight or you're not using them right - not getting full benefit of the poles.

  17. #17
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    My strap have a nice soft fabric over the nylon. I have no problems at all.

  18. #18
    Registered User ChinMusic's Avatar
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    I have absolutely zero calluses on my hands (occupational). When holding a pole the "proper way" it just feels like its gonna wear a hole in my hands. I go back to using the straps the wrong way most of the time. On difficult sections I take my hands out of the straps altogether. That way I don't get stuck in a fall. I'd rather toss em than break a thumb.
    Fear ridges that are depicted as flat lines on a profile map.

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