This is not a shopping question just to preface that issue. I'm not looking for a specific brand or model of trekking pole. Also to add some background information, I have borrowed trekking poles once, but do not own any. They are a rather new thing for me to consider as I've been a bit stubbornly (and maybe irrationally) opposed to them until I began to have knee pain as I grow older.
There are several trekking pole manufacturers, and they all seem to have a myriad of options and models. One of those major categories is the Anti-Shock, (hereafter known as "AS"), or shock-absorbing models. These poles use different methods to reduce the amount of force transferred to your hands and arms upon the poles' strike with the ground. Well, at least that's my understanding anyway. Standard poles do not have this mechanism.
So my question is what are the pros & cons of each: AS versus Standard trekking poles?
Just a few of the the things I'm wondering about as a jumping off point:
Effectiveness of the AS mechanism. Does it really make that much of a difference over non-AS poles?
Weight differences between AS and standard: noticeable or negligible?
Reliability: is one type more reliable than the other? Or are they about the same?
Are all AS designs roughly the same or are some better (more effective or more reliable) than others?
Are there specific occasions when AS is a definite advantage/disadvantage when hiking?
There are a nearly overwhelming number of trekking pole reviews out there so to help direct this question, I'm really looking for answers from those who have owned or used both types of poles thus having their experiences with them informing those answers.
Any possible studies out there would also be welcome information.