Rock climbing isn't an activity restricted to elite climbers determined to scale steep cliffs. It's a healthy form of exercise that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, both indoors and outdoors. While learning about basic rock climbing techniques will help you become a better climber, even beginners can start climbing with just a little basic safety training. Here are four reasons to start rock climbing.
1. Go at your own pace
Rock climbing isn't an inherently competitive sport. When you climb, you have the opportunity to challenge yourself and find out what your body can do. You can choose easy climbing routes for a leisurely experience or move on to more challenging routes once you get the hang of climbing. Rock climbing is a self-directed activity, which may put less pressure on people than group exercise classes.
2. Climb in a safe environment
Some people worry about taking up rock climbing because they fear that it's an inherently hazardous activity. However, rock climbing can be incredibly safe with the right equipment. Climbing gyms are equipped with everything that beginners and experienced climbers need. Safety harnesses will protect climbers in the event of falls, and climbing gyms feature padded floors as an additional safety feature. Unlike outdoor terrain, the climbing walls in specialized gyms are free from jagged, sharp edges and environmental hazards, so climbers can feel safe and secure at all times.
3. Take your climbing outdoors
Climbing gyms are a great place to climb when you're a beginner. They also allow climbers to keep climbing all year long, even during the winter months. However, one of the benefits of taking up rock climbing is that you can do it almost anywhere. Rock climbers can climb peaks in their area using the same types of safety equipment found in climbing gyms. Experienced climbers can even take up bouldering, a type of free climbing that uses no equipment at all but rather relies on climbers' skills. Climbing outdoors can be a wonderful way to enjoy nature, get more vitamin D in your system, and take in some fresh air.
4. Exercise your entire body
Rock climbing is an excellent full-body exercise. Climbing requires you to use your core muscles, leg muscles, and arm muscles to propel yourself up steep rockfaces. Climbing regularly can help you maintain a healthy body weight and get a toned, aesthetically pleasing physique that you can show off at the beach.