Nordic walking group exercise technique Bath

Choosing Nordic walking poles

If you’ve discovered Nordic walking you might well want your own poles. This blog’s here to help.

1. What do you want them for?  

  • Is it mostly for regular walking in and around Bath? If so a pole with a spiked tip is best as it will dig into the ground well even when it’s muddy/stony.
  • Do you want to take them with you when travelling?  You will need travel poles if you do.
  • Will you keep them in a car or do you need them to be portable for going on your bike/public transport?
  • Will you be sharing your poles with anyone else (a spouse for instance)?  If so adjustable poles will be best.

2. How much are you prepared to pay?  

  • Prices range from just under £50 to £150.
  • The budget poles are great if you’re just starting out or don’t know if it’s something you want to do long term.
  • The high quality carbon poles are the most expensive because they absorb vibrations running up the pole shaft when you plant the pole plus they are generally lighter and have a better ‘swing’ weight.

3. How long have you been Nordic walking?
We really like fixed length poles.  Very little goes wrong with them and they provide a good walking experience.  However because you can’t adjust them you must be sure about the height you want.  This can change depending on how long you’ve been Nordic walking. To begin with a shorter pole is often easier to use but once you get the hang of the technique you might want a longer pole.  So be cautious about buying a fixed length pole if you’ve only just started Nordic walking. If in doubt ask your instructor.

4. Our recommendations
There are plenty of poles on the market but here are a few that we like:

  • Fixed length poles – Our budget choice would be the Gabel X-2 Carbon (£44.95) 35% carbon.  Our top of the range choices would be the Exel Nordic Pro Straight/Curve (£135/£145) 100% carbon.
  • Adjustable poles – The Leki Spin Superlock (£54.95) aluminium or Leki Speed Pacer Vario (£125) 100% carbon.
  • Travel poles – Gabel Fusion (£49.95) aluminium or Leki MicroTrailstick/Trail Vario (£125/£135) 100% carbon.

For more detailed information see our Pole blog on our sister site, Bristol Nordic Walking.  Don’t forget you can email us for more information about poles and where to buy them. It can be a bit daunting to know what’s right for you and we’re always happy to help.