Rock Climbing is such a challenging activity that it has been integrated in many team building and leadership programmes. Unsurprisingly, many Singaporean’s first experiences at rock climbing were during their schooling days. The adrenaline-rushing sport is more often than not physically demanding; it involves training your body’s endurance, flexibility and strength.
Not only that, rock climbing also commands a high level of mental strength. Fortunately, such determination and willpower can be strengthened overtime with increased attempts at rock climbing.
Before showing up at the rock climbing walls, do read through this brief guide to prep yourself. Here’s What To Expect When You Go Rock Climbing For The First Time.
Show up in comfortable sports attire which will allow you to be flexible with and not restrict your movements. Overly tight and body-hugging apparels are definitely not recommended.
You will be renting a special type of climbing shoes from the climbing centre itself – so it does not matter what footwear you wear. However, do remember to bring along a pair of socks.
Some rock climbing places do not allow non-certified climbers to climb, while a few other companies do permit even first-timers to have a go after a short safety briefing. Typically, an instructor will guide everyone through the essential skills of belaying and more – which will take no more than half an hour. After ensuring each participant is ready, you are good to go!
Do your research on the company’s policy before heading down to avoid disappointment.
You will need a belaying partner – unless you have an accompanying private instructor or are climbing a wall with an automatic belaying device.
Unfortunately, not everyone is fit to be your belaying partner. According to professionals, it is best that your belaying partner is not more than 11 kilograms lighter than you. Otherwise, things can get dangerous when you fall.
STRATEGISE YOUR ROUTE
Your vision of field changes dramatically when you are on the ground and when you are climbing the wall. It is best to roughly map out your climbing path beforehand, instead of trying to make last minute nerve-wrecking decisions on the wall. You will be surprised by how hard it is to spot the hand crimps and footholds when you are high above the ground.
USE YOUR LEGS
Contrary to popular belief, rock climbing was never just about the arms. Upon gently grasping the high holds, you need to use mainly your core and legs instead to propel your lower body upwards. Using only your arms to carry the entire weight will tire you out speedily.
AVOID LOOKING DOWN
You may be fearless, but the fact that you are clinging onto the wall a few metres above ground with your bare hands for support may begin to distract you when encountering difficulties.
Channel all your focus onto climbing and do not look down as it will hinder your progress. Just breathe, focus, and tell yourself that as with life, the only way is up.
About the writer:
Hui Jun Ng is a staff writer for ladyironchef. She previously worked in the food and marketing industry. She loves traveling and enjoys exploring underrated destinations. In her free time, you will find her indulging in coffee and her all time favourite local dish – bak chor mee.