Nordic Walking Pole Height
Different sports require different length poles, and it is not only important to choose the right material, it’s also important to make sure you get the correct length. The ideal length for your poles depends on the sport type, on the route profile and not least on the ability level of the user as well.
Available types of poles on the market include fixed poles, which have a a fixed length and variable or telescopic poles, which can be adjusted when needed and are suited to different sports. The latter choice gives you a high level of variability, but the downside is that they are less solid and more susceptible to errors. This means they can buckle through misapplication or wear, and the adjustment mechanism can fail.
A pole length calculator can help to give you a rough estimation of the ideal length, however this doesn’t take into account the high level of complexity required to precisely calculate the necessary length. In this case – as so often – there’s nothing like trying it for yourself.
Personal preference is of course important when choosing the correct length - what is too long for some, is perfect for the more experienced. The rules of thumb mentioned above give you some approximate guidelines, if in doubt, nothing beats trying it for yourself!
In nordic walking the pole is used to push backwards to generate force. The force used in Nordic walking is not as strong as with cross-country skiing, so you can safely use telescopic poles. Because you will be walking on a solid surface and the pole won’t sink down as it would in snow, the angle of the elbows should measure 90° when the pole is held by the grip and positioned perpendicular to the ground. The rubber cap on the end of the pole is important, it helps to generate plenty of friction, to stop the pole from falling.