BENEFITS OF ROCK CLIMBING
GETS KIDS ACTIVE
Childhood obesity is a prevalent concern in today's society. Getting kids interested in sports is a direct and effective way to combat this epidemic, and climbing offers a full-body workout. A common misconception is that climbing only works your upper body. Any seasoned climber will tell you that using your legs and feet is a huge part of climbing effectively. Longer climbing routes will work on cardio and will build endurance. The best part is that climbing is such a fun and engaging activity that most kids forget they are also getting in a workout!
IMPROVE MEMORY AND COGNITIVE SKILLS
Climbing can be very mentally stimulating. A study from the University of Northern Florida found that climbing can improve your working memory. Working memory is your short-term memory. The classic example of working memory is being able to do a math problem in your head without a piece of paper. Climbing requires focus to find the right body position, balance, and movement to unlock the puzzle-like sequence to get up the wall. Students may struggle with some routes on the school rock climbing wall, but that's ok! They don't have to reach the top on the first try every time. That's part of climbing!
BUILD CONFIDENCE AND TEACH GOAL SETTING HABITS
Half of climbing is mental, and because it's an individual sport, goals, and accomplishments are very personalized. For one person simply getting on the wall might be a huge breakthrough. Other peoples' goals might be to get to the top of the wall or finish a difficult route. It is very easy to measure success in climbing.
If you've recently achieved a goal, you know first-hand the confidence it instills. You don't even have to achieve a goal in order to get that confidence boost, simply taking steps toward achieving that goal can be a significant confidence booster. Climbing is a great opportunity to teach students valuable goal setting techniques and increase their confidence at the same time.
TEACH RISK MANAGEMENT
A school rock climbing wall is a great opportunity to teach students the importance of responsibility and risk management skills while in a safe and supervised environment. Teaching skills like belaying and rappelling provides an opportunity to cover safe climbing practices, gives students an opportunity to overcome their fears, and is another confidence boost that climbing can provide.
CREATE LASTING RELATIONSHIPS
One of the basic skills required for climbing is belaying. Belaying is when a climber's partner is on the other end of the rope and manages the rope to protect the climber in the event of a fall. It's an easy skill to learn but is extremely important, requiring lots of trust to know that your belay partner is going to catch you. Belaying also requires effective communication, another beneficial skill for students.
Even young kids are able to learn belaying skills and can become competent belayers. We have a system for teaching, testing, and supervising young belayers, it's a great experience for students.