What can older hikers do to help offset the stiffness, aches, and pains that come with getting older so that they can continue hiking into their late 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. That’s the question that a reader sent me last week. She writes:[quote]I am in my late 50’s and my partner is 64. We have completed (and loved) several multi-day walks over the past 20 years but are becoming stiffer in the joints as we age. We are planning a challenging 5-day hike in New Zealand early next year and wonder how best to prepare to avert any physical discomfort. While we will continue our usual gym routines and regular walking, the age factor / aches and pains / stiffness are becoming an issue. We want to continue our hiking for as long as possible, so any suggestions appreciated.[/quote]
This issue has been on my mind as well, since I’m now approaching my mid-50’s. I reckon I have about 15-20 years of backpacking left which explains my fervor in doing as much as I can while I’m still reasonably “robust”.
What advice would you give us?