I'm "walking disabled" from a nasty car wreck a number of years ago and I use a ski pole or 2 just about every time I have to walk on an uneven surface while doing outdoory stuff. In fact I used a collapsable (sp?) trecking pole my nephew got me for Christmass this morning to walk 300 yards from the truck to our goose blind across a plowed and planted field. If I'm in the wilderness and not on my ATV I probably have some sort of ski pole, treking pole, monopod or other long stick in my hand. For me it is more for stability so I don't snap an ankle or roll down hill but when packing a bag of decoys or my hunting gear or a backpack having the strength of my arms to share the load makes a HUGE difference on my legs and my lungs. My back is fine so no opinion on this issue.
A standard ski pole is the strongest but the petaled (flower like) basket will snag on every twig or clump of grass and they load up with mud but they don't sink in the mud as far. Tip: cut off the square edges of the petals so it looks more like a star. They take camo paint nicely.
A collapsing trekking pole is very convenient (no help if the pole is not with you) but when they get dirty they can get difficult to collapse ot extend. The baskets are normally round(ish) so they dont snag as much but they have a tendency to dissapear when the going gets rough. They are the second strongest option. Dont put any more trust in them then you have to for dangerous walking because if they fail while stopping a downhill stumble you are going down. Paint can goober up the joints. The shock absorbing feature of some poles is a gimick in my oppinion. Actually a bit annoying.
Shooting monopods are just that. Same issues as the trekking poles but no basket so they poke into most damp soil and have to be lifted out with every step and the joints have the weakest locks so they don't support much pressure. They make a great walking cane, if you will, to improve balance but I don't reccomend them other than they can be extremey light weight and they serve to help steady a rifle for shooting and they are inexpensive (thrift store ski poles are cheap too). NOT FOR DOWN HILL SUPPORT OR CROSSING SHIN TRAPPING ROCK PILES. These are the most likely to fail in the grip as well as the joints. They are better in these situations than nothing, but not much.
Lastly, I never use the wrist straps. falling when walking is different then falling while skiing. Tripping with a metal bar strapped to your hand will be a fast lesson in leverage and you could soon be learning all the names of the tiny bones in your hands. Broken hands means no walking stick for the long trip back to the rig. IMHO