No one wants to get injured while hiking. Gear companies are always looking for new ways to keep you safe, protected and comfortable on outdoor adventures.

However, preventing injuries on the trail isn’t always possible. Sometimes, things just happen. Always have a first-aid kit handy, be prepared to turn back if necessary, leave a trip plan behind and bring the 10 essentials on every hike.

If you’re looking for some unique ways to mitigate the risk of injury on the trail, check out these cool gear items for your next hiking adventure:


Stoko: Knee Brace

StokoStoko lowres

Knee pain and injury are common ailments for hikers, climbers and outdoor enthusiasts. The traditional rigid knee brace hasn’t changed in design for over 50 years—until now. Stoko is a Vancouver-based company that created a medical-grade knee brace built directly into a compression tight.

The K1 is a complete redesign of the cumbersome, heavy, traditional knee brace. Called supportive apparel, it’s meant to be worn on outdoor adventures, at the gym or while playing sports. It offers a total range of motion while also providing support in compromised positions, when you’re more prone to injury.

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BlistWool: Blister Protection

BlistwoolAlison Karlene Hodgins

Rather than using plastic, disposable blister bandages, BlistWool offers an environmentally friendly, natural option for explorers who want to keep bagging peaks without suffering from red, raw blisters.

BlistWool uses 100 per cent Canadian wool grown by sheep in the western and prairie provinces. The wool is naturally washed and processed (without the use of harmful chemicals!) in Alberta. Rather than using fine Merino wool, BlistWool has the qualities of fleece that allow it to bind to your sock and stay in place on long hikes when your boots might otherwise rub.

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Columbia Long Sleeve: Sun Protection

shirt spf sunAlison Karlene Hodgins

It’s finally summer! We all want to get out into the sunshine, right? Not so fast—exposing our skin to harmful UVB rays can cause sunburns, skin cancer, immune system suppression, premature aging and eye damage.

Slather on that sunscreen, but remember, no sunscreen blocks UV radiation 100 per cent. Add another layer and a hat to cover your skin and protect it from damage. The Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) 50 sun protection in this long sleeve shirt is an effective, long-lasting addition to sunscreen. Take on the heat with patented wicking technology that pulls moisture away from your skin to keep you dry and comfortable.

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Survival Frog: Hand Warmer

Hand warmerKristin Alicia

If you’re prone to cold fingers, this rechargeable hand warmer is much better than the single-use, disposable kind. As a bonus, it doubles as a power bank! This helps keep you safe by ensuring your communication and navigation tool can be rebooted if necessary.

With three adjustable heat settings, this hand warmer can radiate 35 to 48 C to keep you nice and toasty when it's chilly out. The battery can also be used to recharge your electronic devices, such as your phone. When it runs out of power, simply recharge it using the included USB charging cable.

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Prevent Sprain: Socks for Ankle Support

Prevent SprainApril Thompson

Ankle sprains are one of the most common sports and hiking injuries. Not only is spraining your ankle super painful, but the time you must take off to recover can be extremely frustrating. There are multiple options for preventing ankle sprains, and these technical socks, designed in Portugal, are a super cool solution.

With unique and proprietary fibres, special elasticity, pressure point stimulation and tension straps over the ankles, these socks help prevent and decrease the severity of ankle sprains. They also act as compression socks which increase circulation and reduce fatigue. The socks also have non-slip regions on the bottom and are antibacterial.

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