Pros and Cons of Rucking

2 girls rucking carrying multiple rucksacks
Photo Credit: The U.S. Army

If you’re contemplating wether to start rucking or not and are looking for a quick thought of process, look no further cause we’ve got you covered.

Great Health BenefitsSome People Face Injuries Due to Poor Posture
Low Barrier to Entry – Anyone can do itBenefit of Rucking are not instant
Good way to lose weightRucking Sessions are Time Consuming
A Cheap Sport
Necessary for the military
Great Way To Meet People
Plateau Breaker

Here’s a compilation we made that focuses on all the benefits of rucking.

Pros of Rucking

1- Great Health Benefits

Rucking is a form of LISS (Low Intensity Steady State) training. This means that Rucking is a workout that will not get you breathing heavily, but the workout duration is much longer. For example, If you’re participating a high intense sport like kickboxing, you’ll end up pouring in sweat and out of breath in the first 10 – 20 minutes. This is because kickboxing is a high intensity sport which requires quick movements. That definitely would not happen in rucking.

According to healthline, LISS training has benefits such as:

  • Improved blood circulation
  • Reduced stress
  • Leads to lower risk of heart disease
  • Improved brain function

2- Low Barrier of Entry

Are you able to walk? Do you have a backpack? Well there you go, you just checked off all the requirements needed to start rucking. Seriously though, that’s what makes this sport very attractive. It’s extremely easy to get started and can pay off greatly in health benefits.

The low barrier of entry makes it accessible to a lot of people which makes it a very inclusive sport, to the point where people consider rucking everyday.

3- Good Way To Lose Weight

Given how easy it is to start rucking, its definitely a sport worth looking into if you’re willing to lose weight. According to our rucking calorie calculator, A woman weighing 150lbs who rucks for 1 hour can lose up to an estimated 580 calories in a single session.

Granted there are a lot of different factors involved in losing weight such as total calorie deficit, metablosim rate, diet, genetic factors and more. However, Rucking is a great activity to help you burn calories and get your daily steps in!

4- Rucking Is Cheap

As mentioned before, it really doesn’t require much equipment to get started. All you really need is a backpack. With that said though, should you really get into it, its probably a good idea to invest in some good shoes and other gear for a much more comfortable experience.

Check out our compiled list of rucking gear that you can buy should you be on a tight budget.

5 – Necessary for the military

If you’re thinking of joining the military, its probably a good idea to start rucking as soon as possible. Their tough ruck march requirement of 12 miles in 3 hours is no joke.

Check out our rucking tips or our rucking beginner training program to get you started

6- Great Way To Meet People

Rucking is a great way to meet new people. You can do this by joining a local rucking club. You can do this by searching on Facebook for any rucking groups in your town or just check out all the upcoming rucking events.

Learn more about Rucking For Women.

7- Plateau Breaker

Hitting a plateau is a real problem than people face when they’re stuck in a sport or have been actively engaged in a sport and see no change. For example, if you’re focused on crossfit and have been consistent with your dients and workouts, you may face a point where you see no changes. That’s a road block also known as a plateau.

This is where rucking comes in. Rucking helps you break out of that cycle as it is a LISS focused workout, engages a lot of different muscles (that alone can help break through that plateau), and still gives your body a great work out.

Find out more about how Rucking helps you gain more strength. Also, Here’s a full list of all the benefits of rucking if you’re looking for more reasons to join the club!

Cons of Rucking

As much as I do love rucking and constantly promote it as it has already been gaining popularity all around the world, it does have some downsides.

1 – Some People Face Injuries Due to Poor Posture

According to the Army Public Health Center, common injuries with rucking are:

  • Foot Blisters
  • Knee Pain
  • Stress Fractures
  • Nerve Compression injuries
  • Ankle Injuries

These can all be avoided with proper postures, managing the weight you’re carrying, and using proper rucking gear.

Learn more about potential rucking injuries.

2 – Benefit of Rucking are not instant

Rucking is a long term kind of sport. This means that just like with any sport, you wont reap the results quickly. This is no magical diet pill. You really need to be patient and put in the work.

How do you overcome this?

My best advice is to simply try out the sport for a week or two and see if you enjoy it. If you manage to stay consistent and actually enjoy it, then you’re golden. Enjoy the process and the results you’re looking for will follow.

3- Rucking Sessions Are Time Consuming

Unlike going to the gym, you can get a way with a 30 minute workout session of lifting weights if you’re incorporating different techniques like drop sets, super sets, paired with short brakes.

The same can not be said about rucking. Rucking requires patience.

A typical ruck for me lasts anywhere between an hour to sometimes two hours. Given that we all have busy lives, it does become difficult to schedule that into my daily routine at times.

4- Good Rucking Gear can be expensive, which is a commonly known downside

From my experience, when I first started, it didn’t really cost me much to get going. The first month or two were fine. However, when I really got into it (I mean I really got into it and checked the Reddit forum like all the time!), I noticed that it was time to invest in some gear.

When looking at the options in the market, I realized that it was really expensive. Hence, I put together a list of GORUCK alternative gear for those looking for different options.

Nevertheless, it can get expensive. To be honest though, the same can be said about any other sport. There’s always going to be the more expensive option when it come

Final Thoughts

As bias as this may sound given, especially that you’re reading this from a rucking site, Rucking is 100% recommended and the pros outweigh the cons. Like any other sport out there, rucking has its challenges but it definitely pays off in the long term.

Its a sport that has great health benefits, can be done by anyone, great for losing weight, highly accessible, cheap, and helps your break through your plateau in whatever sport you’re currently engaged in. You just have to make sure that you’re following proper rucking tips to avoid common rucking injuries and shoulder pain that can be caused from rucking.

Adam Sheriff

Adam is an experienced rucker and has been in the game for the past 5 years. He competed in a local ruck challenge and was hooked ever since. He has been actively helping people get into rucking and has set up local ruck events to help spread the word and encourage more people to get in on the action. When he’s not out rucking or setting up ruck events in town, he manages

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