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How to Adjust Your Trekking Poles for a Proper Fit

This video shows you how to make sure your trekking poles are adjusted properly to fit your height and explains how to use wrist straps correctly.

How to Adjust Your Trekking Poles for a Proper Fit

There are a lot of different trekking poles on the market, and most of them are adjustable. Following are a couple of tips on how to adjust poles to fit you properly.


For use on flat ground and slightly varying terrain, a properly adjusted trekking pole will have your elbow at a fairly right angle to your body. Your hand should reach out and be able to grasp the pole comfortably. Start by lengthening the pole sections out until you get to a point where you adjust them to be snug and then stand and see if they fit. Check to see if your elbow is at a relatively right angle. Are your poles adjusted too short? If your arm is angled downward, you will need to lengthen the pole some more to give it a bit more height. If your arm is too bent, then you’ll want to shorten the length a little bit.


Most trekking poles have a series of graduated markings. These allow you to figure out which adjustment is going to be right for you, so every time you use your poles you can go right to that measurement and be certain that it will be properly adjusted to fit you.


Most trekking poles also come with simple straps that can be adjusted. On a more basic trekking pole model, you can pull the loose end to tighten the strap and make the wrist strap shorter, or you can pull the other end out to make the wrist strap wider. A simple tensioning device inside the pole handle locks when you weight the strap with your hand, and it won’t loosen while you use the pole. Some other models have a bit more complex strap adjustment. If you are not certain how to adjust the strap on the pole that you have, check with the manufacturer for details.


Once you’ve adjusted your strap to a comfortable length, you’re going to put your hand through the strap and grasp the handle of your pole. When the strap is weighted, it should be cradling your hand. Most trekking poles come with extremely adjustable lengths. If you are on the very tall or very short end of the height spectrum, you’ll want to double check on a pole’s length before you buy it to make sure it’s of a length that suits your body type.