Friday, 18 January 2008 – Kris Koonar
While outdoor rock climbing is an excellent sport, it is also fraught with risks. You could lose a foothold or you could get caught up in a blizzard or a snowstorm and get frostbitten. Rock climbing also requires proper time and planning. The time spent on planning and reaching your mountain could be more than the time you actually spend on rock climbing. Enter indoor wall rock climbing.
This type of rock climbing where you can climb a wall fitted with footholds and even finger holds can be installed inside your house or even in your backyard. This arrangement offers you almost the same joys of rock climbing without the associated risks. Since you can indulge in rock climbing on a regular basis, you could plan your schedule so that you can train regularly on it. In the long run rock climbing can help you increase your strength in your arms, legs and even fingers and regular training can also build up your stamina.
Once you have built a rock-climbing wall or if you have installed one professionally, then you and your family can slowly start practicing climbing it. You can start with the easy sections first, and if you have a wall with an overhang, then that section should be attempted last, since it places a lot of stress on your hands and fingers. The holds on the wall should also be interchangeable and movable. This will enable you to keep changing their positions to keep your climb interesting and you could also increase your level of difficulty in future by fixing fewer holds.
By adhering to a routine, you can take in all the advantages which rock climbing walls can offer. If it is kept indoors, you can even practice when it is raining or snowing. For city dwellers, a rock-climbing wall is a very practical investment in keeping fit, as it is not possible for them to go outside the city regularly to do rock climbing. You can attach a harness with an auto-belay to help you train alone if your rock-climbing wall has an overhang or if the difficulty level is high. For a simple wall, this might not be required, but a thick soft mat should be spread at the foot of the wall to prevent any injuries in case you slip and fall.
In case it is not possible to install a climbing wall in or out of your house, then you could join a gym, which has one. This makes for an interesting change in workout, when you go to the gym and they would also have trained instructors to correct you in case you make any mistakes. You can increase your stamina by climbing as per different difficulty levels and also different time levels. So slowly and steadily, as you increase your difficulty level and shorten the time required to do it, you will notice your fitness levels rising. For young children too, wall climbing is a very important training aid as it teaches them to think, plan and then execute their moves.
So, any way you look at it you will still have to look up to wall climbing since the benefits associated with it will stay with you in the long run and therefore rock-climbing walls is truly a very important training aid in the quest for a long and fit life.
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