Do you notice shoulder pain after hiking? Do you hold any objects in your hands such as a water bottle while you are hiking? This can prevent your body from the proper arm swing. Typically in gait, the right arm should swing when we step forward with the left leg and the left arm should swing when we step forward with the right leg. When this doesn't happen, it creates imbalance in the body. When we walk, run or jog, the arms need to be free to move.
Whenever I have gone hiking with a water bottle in my hand, I would end up with shoulder pain after my hike, even though I changed which hand that I carried the water bottle in throughout the hike. I only noticed the correlation through trial and error. Whenever I remember to bring my water bottle holster, my shoulder didn't hurt afterward. The arms do not like to be stagnant during movement. Unnatural movement of the body or forcing an area of the body to stay stagnate when it should move creates compensation patterns throughout the body that can create more pain and dysfunction in other areas of the body not related to the shoulder area at all. One common area are the hips. When you go for walks or hikes, do you notice the hips not feeling lined up with each other? Pay attention, because this can lead to no longer being able to hike anymore of not addressed right away. One thing that I do like about long walks and hikes, is if my hips do feel unbalanced at the beginning, they usually balanced toward the end. Long walks and hikes for me usually make my hips feel like they have been adjusted.
For a long hike in the woods, I like to have a fanny pack, for essentials such as keys, phone and driver's license, and a water bottle holster for my water bottle to hang off of my hip. Some fanny packs come attached to a water bottle holster.