Outdoor Jackets You Need to Have This Season: Jacket Guide 101

With the winter season upon us and the weather getting colder by the day. You may be thinking about buying a new outdoor jacket to stay warm. However, buying a quality outdoor jacket isn’t as open-and-shut of a case as you may think. There’s a lot to consider, a lot to look out for, and a lot of options to choose from. To help you out, we’ve put together a bit of basic information on outdoor jackets. How to pick one, so keep reading to learn everything you need to know!

Why Having an Outdoor Jacket Is Important

Depending on where you live, winter can be anything from slightly chillier weather to outright dangerously low temperatures. If you’re living in the latter, it goes without saying that your standard hoodie or windbreaker just isn’t going to cut it. You’ll need something significantly heavier, warmer, and better-insulated. That’s where outdoor jackets come in. Outdoor jackets are designed to keep you warm in much chillier temperatures. They allow you to enjoy outdoor winter activities warmly and safely.

Features to Look For

Man is wearing green color winter outdoor jacket

Whether you’re shopping for a lightweight rain jacket or a heavy winter coat. It’s important to know what features to look for. In the case of rain jackets, for example, be sure to purchase a jacket with a high hydrostatic head, (expanded on below) to keep yourself dry during heavy rain. For heavier outdoor coats, ensure that your coat of choice is well-insulated so that it can keep you warm even at extremely low temperatures. By confirming these features are present before deciding which jacket you’re going to purchase, you’ll ensure that your jacket does exactly what you need it to.

Understanding Hydrostatic Head

If you’re searching for a waterproof jacket, you’ll notice that each jacket’s waterproofing is marked with an mm rating. Often referred to as its hydrostatic head. While having the rating for reference is all well and good. It’s not much use to you if you don’t know how to interpret it, but fortunately, it’s simple enough to figure out. 

The rating determined through a hydrostatic head test, in which a piece of fabric is stretched tightly over a small vessel. The vessel has water pumped through it at a gradually increasing pressure. When the water finally forces its way through the fabric, the pressure recorded. This level of pressure is the hydrostatic head, or the number of millimeters of water a piece of fabric can withstand in 24 hours without leaking. Jackets generally need a hydrostatic head of 5,000 millimeters or greater to be considered waterproof. So be sure to keep an eye out while shopping!

Types of Outdoor Jackets

Girl with pink color winter jacket and cap

Within the broader umbrella of outdoor jackets, there are also many subcategories to pay attention to. First of all, there are softshell and hardshell jackets. Neither are intended to protect you from extremely low temperatures. But they designe to be a stylish piece of outerwear that’s great for protecting you from rain, snow, wind, and other weather conditions. If you’re planning on some light hiking. Both are excellent options, but they probably aren’t going to do well as mountaineering jackets by themselves.

If a mountaineering jacket is what you’re after, though, consider a heavier option like a fleece coat or a puffer jacket. Both of these design to keep you as warm as possible in extremely low temperature. Preventing your body heat from escaping to ensure you’re comfortable throughout your hike. If you’re planning on going into an extremely cold area where the temperatures could be a legitimate hazard. Be sure your outdoor jacket is heavy enough for the job. Paired with a waterproof softshell or hardshell as outerwear. You can use your heavy jacket to stay warm, dry, and safe from the start of your climb to the summit.

How Much Should You Spend on an Outdoor Jacket?

Outdoor jackets

As with most outdoor equipment, the ideal price point of an outdoor jacket varies largely on what you need it to do. If you’re just looking for a casual jacket to keep you warm during a chilly day. You won’t have to spend much. If you’re looking for the jacket that’ll get you through your next winter expedition. Though, you should come ready to shell out a fair chunk of change. While some of the price tags on higher-quality outdoor jackets are certain to raise a few eyebrows. You’re ultimately paying for quality, functionality, and most importantly, longevity. So you’ll get plenty of value no matter how much you spend. Ultimately, though, the choice is up to you, so feel free to spend as much or as little as you need for your ideal jacket.

Looking for more great tips, tricks, and products to fuel your active outdoor lifestyle? Feel free to visit our site at NineFit today!

How to Prepare for a Long-Distance Trek – Everything You Need to Know

Whether you’re hiking for the first time or just gearing up for your next trekking adventure, preparation is of the utmost importance. There’s a lot that can go wrong during a long hike, but with the right equipment, training, and preparation, most of those risk factors can reduce or even eliminate. If you’re looking to set out on a long-distance trek, be sure to keep reading to learn everything you need to know!

Travel Light

Long-distance trek usually require you to pack some sort of food, water, bedding, and other essentials to sustain yourself. However, you can’t just toss a bunch of those essentials in a backpack and call it a day. Remember that you’ll have to carry everything you pack. So each and every ounce of weight counts. Be sure to invest in an ultra-light backpack and sleeping pad, and consider purchasing freeze-dried meals to take with you. While these ultra-light alternatives may not provide the same level of luxury as their full-weight counterparts, they’ll create much less strain during long hiking days, so they’re a worthwhile investment.

Watch the Weather

Trekking in snow

When deciding on a day and time to set out on your hike, be sure to keep the weather in mind. Weather conditions can greatly impact the quality, safety, and enjoyability of your hiking experience. So knowing what to expect ahead of time will do wonders. For example, if you’re expecting rain or snow, you can dress with waterproof and cold resistant clothing to keep yourself insulated. Of course, if these weather conditions are heavier than you think you can handle. It’s always better to play it safe and just set out at a later date. By doing this, you’ll greatly reduce the likelihood of injuries and other accidents.

Train Ahead of Time

Set a date for your hike well ahead of time, and start training as soon as you can. Many people don’t think of hiking as an extremely intense physical activity, but it definitely can be. There’s a difference between walking down a city block and trekking through the mountains with a heavy pack strapped to your back. So an average level of physical fitness isn’t going to cut it. To prepare, we recommend going on shorter hikes around local nature reserves. To simulate a day pack, just fill a backpack with water jugs or bags of dried rice, and walk for as long as you can manage. Over time, you’ll get more used to the exertion, and by the time your hike rolls around, it’ll be a breeze, allowing you to relax and enjoy the sights as you walk.

Find a Group

Long-distance trek

While doing a long-distance trekking adventure solo is possible, it’s not the best idea. You’re going to be far away from any form of civilization for a fairly long time. So if something bad were to happen and you were incapacitated, you wouldn’t be able to call for help. We recommend going in a group of at least three. If an injury occurs, try to keep the group together while treatment is provided. If first aid isn’t going to cut it, though, send one person to go find help, and have another person stay with the injured hiker and continue to monitor their condition. 

Learn First Aid

In the event that you or a member of your group is injured, you need to know how to provide first aid. While it won’t solve the issue entirely, first aid treatment can be used to stop a wound from bleeding, sterilize the injured area, and dress the wound to prevent infection. Before you set out on a hiking trip, learn the ins and outs of first aid treatment, purchase first aid necessities like gauze, bandages, and disinfectant, and learn the next steps after providing first aid. This will allow you to stay calm and provide quick treatment in case of an unexpected emergency.

Invest in a Satellite Phone

Man is talking on satellite phone

Of course, if the worst does happen and a member of your group is injured, it’s best not to split up at all. If you’re using a more conventional cell phone, this simply isn’t possible, as you won’t be able to get a signal out in the wilderness. However, that’s not the case with satellite phones. Satellite coverage allows you to find a signal from just about anywhere, so even in the most distant of areas, you’ll still be able to call for help if needed.

Looking for more great tips, tricks, and products to plan your next outdoor adventure? Feel free to visit our site at NineFit today!

10 Yoga Poses to Help Curb Knee Pain and Strengthen Your Knees

Intro: Knee injuries and leg pain are a reality you often have to accept if you’re a frequent runner or work in a labor-intensive field. Reparative exercise can help with this, especially yoga for knee pain. Stretches or yoga for knee injury can also aid in recovery after you’ve hurt your knee. These 10 yoga poses will help show both how to strengthen knees and stop knee pain.  

1. Mountain Pose 

This beginner level pose is a staple in any yoga routine. Also called Tadasana, it strengthens legs, ankles, and core muscles, improving posture. By grounding through the feet and lengthening the spine, it fosters a sense of stability, calm, and mindfulness. This is a great position to try if you’re new to yoga and want to test the waters. It’s a foundational pose that will help you build body awareness.  

2. Chair Pose 

Chair pose

Out of all the yoga stretches out there, the chair pose is another easy, yet effective pose. To try it yourself, start out in mountain formation. Then, raise your arms overhead, and exhale, bending your knees as if sitting in a chair. Keep your knees over your ankles and weight in your heels. Hold for 30 seconds, or however long is comfortable.

3. Warrior Pose

The warrior pose, also called Virabhadrasana, is one of the more common yoga stretches for legs. This pose can be pretty challenging, but it’s very beneficial for strengthening the thigh muscles and opening the hips. This is a standing pose that focuses on both the upper and lower body. 

4. Warrior Pose II

Warrior Pose II

This pose is similar to the previous, but it offers more intense knee stretches and opening of the hips. The instructions are fairly simple. You start by assuming the warrior pose, before positioning  your hips and shoulders off to the side. Next, you’ll extend your arms parallel to the floor, palms facing down. Hold for a minute, then you’ve done it! 

5. Bridge Pose 

Kneeling poses like the bridge pose strengthens your thighs, glutes, and lower back. The steps on this pose are also straightforward. Begin by lying on your back, before bending your knees and placing your feet hip-width apart flat on the mat. Rest your arms alongside your body with your palms facing down. Then, inhale as you press through your feet, engaging your glutes and lifting your hips toward the ceiling. Remember to breathe deeply as you hold the pose as long as you’re able. 

6. Extended Triangle Pose 

Extended Triangle Pose 

Utthita Trikonasana, commonly known as extended triangle pose, is a versatile yoga posture that benefits your whole body. It’s also excellent for releasing tension in your knees and whole body by stretching the inner thighs and opening the hips. As an added bonus, the pose also stretches the spine, strengthens the back muscles, and even engages the abdominal muscles. yoga exercises like the extended triangle pose are a bit trickier to pull off. If you’re a beginner, you might try  simpler yoga for leg pain first. 

7. Garland Pose 

The Garland position is another one of the kneeling poses that involve deep squatting. Here’s how you can do this pose yourself. First, start in a mountain pose. Bend your knees and lower your hips toward the floor. Keep your heels on the mat as much as possible. Next, spread your knees apart wider than your torso. Press your elbows against the inside of your knees, bringing your palms together in a prayer position. Use your elbows to gently open your knees wider. Hold the pose for 30 seconds to a minute, taking deep, intentional breaths. 

8. Child’s Pose 

Child pose

This pose promotes relaxation, stress reduction, and gentle stretching. This makes it a great beginner exercise. It primarily targets the back, hips, and thighs, alleviating tension and improving flexibility. By folding forward and resting your forehead on the floor, Child’s Pose elongates your spine, releasing tension. While this pose is good for stretching the knees, it can make pain worse. Be sure to add padding like a rolled blanket between your knees-this makes the pose easier to pull off. 

9. Hero Pose 

Beginner yoga stretches like this one aim to stretch and strengthen the knees, ankles, and thighs. If you’re looking for a targeted way to energize your legs, the hero pose is a great option. To do this exercise, start on all fours. Kneel on the floor with your knees hip-width apart and your toes pointed back. Next, bring your heels as close to your buttocks as you can. Sit down between your heels and place your palms on your knees. Hold the pose for as long as you feel comfortable before releasing, returning to a kneeling position. 

10. Corpse Pose

Corpse yoga Poses

Despite the morbid name, this is a helpful approach to yoga stretches for legs. This pose involves lying relaxed on the floor. This might seem simple, but even seasoned yoga practitioners struggle with this form of ultimate relaxation. To do the corpse pose, start by laying flat on your back with your legs extended and your arms at your sides. Close your eyes, focus, and let yourself sink into the mat. Simply stay in the pose as long as you feel comfortable. Some stay in the corpse pose for up to 10 minutes. This relaxing pose takes attention away from knee pain, allowing you to destress. 

Want to learn more yoga poses? For more posts on athletic equipment, exercise, and yoga poses and stretches, check out the rest of Ninefit’s blog!