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The Many Health Benefits of Snowshoeing

01/08/2015 05:42 EST | Updated 03/10/2015 05:59 EDT

I love snowshoeing. It is a fantastic way to be outdoors and is easy to do. Just strap on the snowshoes and start walking. Another part of snowshoeing that I really like is that you can go with a group of friends and all be at different fitness levels or abilities and enjoy nature together.

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There are many health benefits too. It provides a cardio workout while also building strength, balance, agility and endurance.

Another big benefit to snowshoeing is that you can burn more calories snowshoeing than you can walking, running or cross country skiing at the same pace!

Recently, I spoke with Dan Grima, Adventure Program Supervisor at Grouse Mountain. Dan shared with me the top tips so anyone can start snowshoeing.

Top Five Tips To Start Snowshoeing

1. Take action! Join a group, take a course or go with experienced friends.

2. Rent or borrow snowshoes before you buy.

3. Dress appropriately: Waterproof shoes or boots work best and layers are key. Avoid cotton clothing and jeans.

4. Don't go too far, keep your first snowshoe adventure short and sweet and preferable on patrolled or guided snowshoe trails.

5. Take essential gear with you, extra clothes, water, whistle. Look after the little things and the rest is easy.

Can anyone snowshoe? Yes. If you can walk, you can snowshoe!

Are there different levels? Most snowshoe parks grade their trails similar to ski runs. However, there is no level system for snowshoeing outside of Beginner, Hiker and Runner.

What do you need for clothing and shoes? This will depend if you are running, walking or hiking. However, in general, waterproof shoes or boots are best. Layering wool or synthetic tops is recommended along with waterproof but breathable pants and long johns.

What else would a person need? It is important that you follow some simple safety messages. Like the "3 Ts": Trip plan, training and taking the essentials.

I am going to continue to snowshoeing, burning those calories and enjoying the outdoors!

Your suggestions are always welcome, as I continue on my journey to enjoy life to the fullest. Let's have the very best 2015!

Visit Sacha daily at SachaD.com

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