Hiking is a sport that mostly everyone is familiar with. With each passing year, this sport is becoming more and more popular. As mainstream lives are turning more mechanical and dynamic, seeking refuge in the wilderness every now and then can be a great option. This article will explore why hiking is a favorite pastime for many people and how you can prepare for one.
Factors that contribute to the popularity of hiking
Different people may have various reasons for hiking. Here are a few prominent theories that contribute to its popularity.
- Cultural shift
Lately, a major cultural shift initiated by newer generations like the millennials and gen Z has been observed. These people cherish experiences over material things. And since their routine lives are flooded with automation, and AI-generated solutions, returning to nature is their way of connecting with their roots.
Hiking serves as a reminder of all the wonders nature has to hold. The newer generation craves the wilderness because it offers something that doesn’t exist in the usual routines. The outdoors brings a sense of being grounded and part of something grander. Hiking is a great way to “unplug” from mobile phones, computers, and other technology-driven devices.
- The impact of social media
Another leading factor that encourages the modern generation is the influence of social media. Whenever someone does something extraordinary and noteworthy, they share it online. The same applies to hiking. This has contributed to the growing awareness of outdoor recreation and the beautiful lands ready to be explored.
When you see other people posting their hiking stories, the fear of missing out can motivate you to do the same. Moreover, social media influencers have played a significant role in introducing the masses to the beauty of nature and promoting the exciting adventures of hiking.
Another reason hiking has gained traction is the outdoor advertisements that bring awareness to a worthy location. Countries seeking to boost tourism often advertise picturesque spots that people would enjoy visiting. While promoting scenic beauty, they also encourage outdoor activities such as hiking so you can explore the wilderness. When people look at these advertisements on billboards, subway ads, and TV commercials, they become curious enough to check out the mentioned trails for themselves.
Why hiking is good for you
Many people favor hiking because of its beneficial qualities. Besides being a great way to relax, hiking is a form of exercise with several health benefits. Usually, exercises are exhausting and might take a long time to show results. But the sight of mountain peaks or stunning canyons provides instant reward.
Massive calorie burn
Hiking helps with muscle toning and improves cardiovascular health, but a major advantage is the massive calorie burn you can achieve with hours of hiking. If you combine that with a proper diet, you’ll see gradual weight loss quickly.
As your body loses extra weight, slow-twitch muscle fibers start developing, giving you a toned and chiseled appearance.
Mental health improvement
Like any exercise, hiking improves mental health by lowering stress levels. A study conducted at Stanford University showed that walking in nature can reduce your risk of depression. Moreover, hiking also boosts creativity in people. For example, when you are stuck somewhere and desperately need some inspiration, nature’s beauty always acts as a catalyst.
Hiking gets your blood flowing, improves your mood, and ultimately makes you feel happy. While that is true for all exercises, hiking is unique because it provides gratification through discovery and exploration.
Exploration and independence
Hiking is a form of exploration that opens you up to new adventures. While others may have trekked on the same trails before you, the experience of discovering new things is unparalleled. Imagine finding a waterfall while hiking across an unfamiliar trail. Outdoor recreational activities re-introduce you to wonder and excitement– feelings that are often lost as you get busy in life.
This sport also gives you a feeling of independence. When hiking along a trail, you feel more in control and confident to make things happen. The overall experience assures you that you can be fine on your own even if you’re not constantly connected to the rest of the world.
Best spots for hiking in Malaysia
Hiking in Malaysia is the perfect way to take a break from the country’s busy life and connect with nature’s wonders’ sights, sounds, and sensations. The exotic sea-meets-jungle terrain of the country is best viewed from the top of its forest-clad mountains. If you want the full benefits of outdoor recreational activities, here are the top hiking spots in Malaysia.
- Bukit Gasing hiking trail
- Rawang Bypass hiking trailhead
- Broga Hill biking trail
- Mt Kinabalu
- Penang Hill
- Bukit Beruang
- Gunung Tahan
- Bukit Larut
- The Pinnacles
- Panorama Hill
- Tawau Hills Park
- Batu Punggol
Things to consider before planning a hike
Hiking can be fun, but things can quickly go southward if you’re unprepared. Following are a few things that you should consider when planning to go on a hike.
- Find hiking buddies
Hiking in groups is always more fun than going solo. So, if you have people who share the same passions as you, discovering new adventures together can be gratifying. In addition to the fun element, safety is another important reason you should go in groups. However, limit the group to four hikers because the more, the merrier doesn’t apply here. If you want to explore on your own, that’s alright as long as you only do it on easier hikes.
- Research your trail options
Before heading out, it’s better to consider a few trail options and pick one that meets your group’s skill level. You can browse through a guidebook or check out trail websites, blogs, and park websites. You should know some basic information about the hike you choose. For example: How far is it? Is it easy? How much elevation gain is there? If you are just a beginner, start with easier hikers and build stamina for harder ones.
- Check trail conditions
Checking the trail conditions ahead of time is an exercise you shouldn’t ignore. Knowing what you’re up against is crucial, so you are fully prepared to tackle the situation. This improves your chances of remaining safe and completing the trail without returning mid-way.
- Make sure you have enough time
Many things can extend your hiking time, so it’s recommended to come prepared as such. Check how long it generally takes people to hike and add some buffer time. You should also keep track of the time the sun sets, so you’re not left on the trail after dark. Don’t forget to pack extra snacks as emergency food if the hike takes longer than expected.
- Read up on trail regulations
Many hiking spots have rules and regulations to preserve the natural environment and ensure every hiker has a positive experience. Therefore, you should check park websites to confirm whether you need a park pass, reservation, or permit.
When planning a hiking trip, it is imperative to travel light, but there are a few essentials you must always carry. If you’re going in a group, you can divide these essentials between the members.
- Food and water
- Navigation aid such as map
- Warm clothing
- Emergency tent
- First aid kit
- Basic tools, including a knife
- Communication device
Now that you know the must-haves of hiking, how will you carry all these things? In a hiking bag! A backpack with many functional pockets can be an ideal companion for a hiking trip. You also need it to be sturdy and enduring– that’s why we recommend American Tourister backpacks. Let’s learn more about American Tourister luggage and what makes it unique.
American Tourister – An ideal travel partner
American Tourister is known for its fresh and colorful bags that appeal to almost every generation. The company has been working for over 85 years, and its products have evolved to meet the expectations of today’s travelers.
The products at American Tourister focus on quality and innovative designs without looking boring and business-like. Their backpacks are perfect for work and play, so if you’re looking for a dependable bag for your next hiking trip- American Tourister is the answer.
A good backpack is packed with useful features and keeps your gear safe. American Tourister Malaysia offers backpacks made from eco-friendly material. Their bags are fluorine-free and water-resistant, with several pockets. Some also have detachable pockets for times when you want to travel extra-light. The backpacks protect your precious belongings from getting damaged or wet, so when investing in an American Tourister backpack, rest assured that it has you covered.
The brand offers other travel solutions as well, including,
- American Tourister hard side luggage
- American Tourister soft side luggage
- American Tourister utility bags
- American Tourister cabin bag
If you want to browse their complete collection, visit American Tourister’s website to check out all available options.
American Tourister is Atome’s partner merchant
Atome is a BNPL company that offers users flexible payment options. With over 15,000 partner brands, it is one of the leading buy-now-pay-later companies in Malaysia. American Tourister is a part of Atome’s partner portfolio which means that if you want to purchase a hiking backpack, you can pay it off in three monthly payments.
Why Atome is a reliable platform
Atome is a Singapore-based company operating in 8 countries worldwide, including Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Mainland China, Thailand, and Indonesia. Trusted by thousands of users globally, Atome is a platform designed to simplify the modern shopping experience.
Digital-savvy consumers today want flexible and convenient payment options so they can buy products and avail services without overspending their budget. Atome gives users the freedom to own products they desire while paying for them over time.
Buying through Atome is simple: download the app (Get the app) and create an account. As soon as your Atome account is approved, you can shop from any of their partner merchants’ online and offline stores. Your total bill is divided into three parts, out of which the first part has to be paid at the time of checking out, while the remaining two can be paid over subsequent months.
How to pay at American Tourister with Atome?
- Select Atome as your partner for payment at check out.
- Enter your details when redirected.
- Pay one part of the bill and enjoy using your American Tourister bag. The rest of the amount can be paid over the following months.
Buy an American Tourister backpack for your next hike!
American Tourister backpacks are ideal for accompanying you on your next hike! Their quality backpacks offer great value for money and are highly functional. Shop at American Tourister today and make the most of Atome’s monthly payment plans.