Nothing Rivals the Rock

November 22, 2009
By E.L.W. PLATINUM, Glen Allen, Virginia
E.L.W. PLATINUM, Glen Allen, Virginia
31 articles 0 photos 59 comments

Favorite Quote:
Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels.
The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes -
the ones who see things differently.
They're not fond of rules and they have no respect for the status quo.
They push the human race forward.


Most children and teens play sports. From hockey to soccer to gymnastics, parents shuffle kids. In place of those commonplace fitness activities, I rock climb.

Nothing can rival the adrenaline that pulses through my body, the stretch a route can give every muscle, or the combination of problem solving (to find what move to utilize to get to the next rock), creativity (I've done "heelhooks" -- hooked my heel on a hold higher than my head to balance and propel me upwards), and endurance (climbs can be anywhere from 20 to 100 feet) that you must have in order to be a successful climber.

A common misconception is that length determines difficulty or that its just like climbing a ladder. A 20 foot route can be far harder than an 85 footer, it depends on the rocks and terrain. And it certainly isn't like climbing a ladder -- you can't just walk up rocks, you have to scale them through a combination of technique, balance, and strength.

You might be thinking I'm insane for taking part in such a dangerous sport. Yes, it can be dangerous. When I rather stupidly tried climbing without a rope, I ended up falling, spiraling, and splitting my chin open when I landed on my face. But as long as you're smart (not like me), you'll be fine.

The best part about it? Lead climbing -- you carry the rope up with you, looping it to the wall as you go. The worst part is, if you fall, you F-A-L-L.

But that's fun for the inner adrenaline junky in all of us!



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