Fitness a Focus This Roar Hunting Season

18th January 2024|2 min
Media Release | For immediate release 

Every Roar, thousands of Kiwi hunters head into the hills after the stags of their dreams. However, without quality fitness training, hunters can sustain severe injuries with consequences that last well beyond the season. That’s why the NZ Mountain Safety Council (MSC) is encouraging hunters to prepare for the 2024 Roar by building up their fitness and strength to set themselves up for a safe and successful hunt.   

MSC insights reveal that severe hunting injuries double during the Roar hunting period, compared to an average month. Over the past 10 years, on average, 40% of the severe hunting injuries* are to the knee or shoulder, which result in an average of 76 days of missed employment.  

The majority of these Roar hunting-related injuries are caused by slips, trips and falls and nearly all are preventable with enough fitness training and preparation, says MSC.  

The Roar hunting season typically kicks off by mid-March, meaning there is still plenty of time for hunters to reach their fitness goals. Every hunt is unique, so fitness requirements depend on many factors such as a hunter’s goal, their hunting location and land access, and group size, MSC Chief Executive Mike Daisley says. 

“We’re asking hunters who plan to head out this Roar, that if they haven’t already started to put some solid training in, they still have two months to get ready,” he says.  

“After all, the fitter you are, the more enjoyable, and safe, your hunt will be and the less likely you’ll be to sustain an injury.” 

Quality preparation and fitness training starts with some self-reflection on fitness capabilities, setting goals and then start training.

MSC have created a downloadable guide to help hunters get #ROARfit. It’s complete with a hunter fitness self-assessment, hot tips, and prompts at 8 weeks out, 4 weeks out and 1 week out. The guide also has some essential prep reminders and other resources to help hunters get the most out of their Roar hunt this year.  

Daisley says that in addition to fitness training, now is also a good time to tick off the planning and preparation stages too. 
“Going over basic navigation skills, understanding your hunting area, and checking all your hunting gear is up to scratch are good habits to get in to before any hunt,” he says.  

Additionally, Daisley recommends hunters check their base hunting kit is ready to go and includes, a rain jacket, warm layered clothing, a hat and gloves, head torch, blaze clothing, emergency shelter, first aid kit and a suitable communications device in addition to a mobile phone.  


Approximately 40% of severe hunting injuries were to the knee and shoulder

A severe hunting injury results in 76 days of missed employment


Notes to journalists:
*A severe injury includes an ACC claim cost of at least $2,000,
at least 10 days off work, or any fracture, head injury or fatality.