Legs and joints

To be safe in any terrain

The additional load on the body, especially on the knee joints due to the backpack, shouldn’t be underestimated.

Knee flexions

Aim of the exercise
The additional load on the body, especially on the knee joints due to the backpack, shouldn’t be underestimated. The strengthening of the lower motor system, i.e. calf (gastrocnemius), thigh (quadriceps femoris) and gluteus muscles, is as important as the use of sticks or an appropriately adjusted backpack.

Exercising
First, we must find a flat surface and do the exercise with a light load on the shoulders. As an alternative, a loaded backpack can be used instead of weights. A variant could be to chose surfaces with increasing slopes. The exercise should be done at least 25 times, divided in three series. The person who doesn’t feel clear tiredness symptoms, can increase the load. To take care of the articulations during the exercises, the body weight should be displaced a bit backwards. At the same time, the knee joints are in the vertical position, just behind of the tip of the toes, and the back is maintained straight.

Step-up

Aim of the exercise
Stony terrain, rocky slopes or slippery descents down from volcanos demand a firm step. With the step-up workout we develop the physical condition and coordination of the whole muscular system of the legs.

Exercise
Starting in the basic position, we rest a foot on a step so that the knee is flexed while the other leg is straight. Then, we stretch the flexed leg, pushing ourselves up. When the leg is totally stretched we rise even more to the tip of the toes, and then we change legs. This exercise can also be done carrying a backpack. Do three series of 20-30 repetitions each.

Stand up on a leg on a soft surface

Aim of the exercise
The tibiotarsus articulation compensates the irregularities of a rough terrain. This exercise develops this articulation and trains the sense of balance.

Exercise
First, we must find a soft surface, ideally fine sand. Then we must balance on one leg while we bend and extend the other. We use the arms to balance the center of gravity of the body. The exercise lasts 30-60 seconds. We repeat it three times with a one minute pause between each exercise.