Hiking is a training of the mind, body and soul. As such, the earlier you get your children to learn the joys of hiking, the better! Not only are you making them escape the childhood obesity epidemic sweeping across America—1 in every 5 school aged child is obese—you’re also implementing in them some truly valuable lessons who can shape who they become as adults.
What does hiking have anything to do with life lessons?
Well, for one, it can teach both you and your kids some excellent leadership lessons! Not sure how? Let’s find out!
The First Step to Being a Good Leader Is Understanding Others’ Limits
A leader who keeps walking at their own pace without looking behind to see if those behind them are keeping up, is very likely to find themselves stranded in the middle of nowhere with no one backing them up!
Understanding your pack’s needs, expectations and limitations from the hike can not only make the trip smoother for everyone involved, it can help you reach your destination faster!
Being at the Top (Or the Front) Doesn’t Necessarily Make You the Leader
If you’re head of your department at work and yet those under you keep turning to your subordinate for anything they need, you might not actually be the leader at all!
Titles are of no use unless you can show responsibility, skill, empathy and communication with all members of your team. Just because your kid doesn’t have the title of trail leader does not always make him incapable of the position! Leadership qualities can be demonstrated by anyone.
Leaders Must Be Good At Communication
A hiking trail can be fraught with danger. From getting your pack past road blocks and obstacles to clearing paths to make the trail smoother, it is the job of the leader to ensure every member of his team is safe from all danger.
Communication is important when hiking in groups—very similar to how it works in the real world too!
Leaders Too Need Mentorship
Who is now a leader was once a follower. Even in the leadership position, the hiker is always learning new things with every hike he goes on, whether from his own experience or through the tutelage of someone more experienced than he.
It pays to have someone to lead a leader, to make him better suited to handling his own team. Teach your kids never to shy away from asking for the help of someone more experienced, no matter how high up the rung they go and they’ll be better equipped to handling stuff they’ve never encountered before.
Preparation Is Key
All leaders are always prepared for everything that may spring up in their journey to the top. Preparedness is the key to success and nowhere is this more important than when you’re away from civilization on a hike!
Enlist the help of your children in packing and preparing for the hike, which will also make them more interested in the trip in general. Pack their favorite snacks, diapers and milk bottles (if you’re bringing a baby), extra layers, sunscreen, lip balm, bug repellant, sufficient water and protein-filled foods, a first-aid box and any medication they might need.
Store all of the gear you might need in a lightweight, comfortable backpack tailored according to your gender and body type like the ones over at Aarn USA and get started on your family hiking trip!
Can’t find what you need? Let their selection guide help!