Growing up, my mom frequently uttered the phrase, “it’s too dangerous.”
Despite her best efforts to keep me safe, it actually pushed me to try everything. Almost like the untamable black horse.
That mindset carried over into adulthood where I still want to experience everything that I can in life. It trickles right into to my workouts. Can you relate?
To feel the adrenaline rush that I crave, I head to Summit Climbing, Yoga and Fitness. It’s the largest climbing gym in the DFW area, with 32,000 square foot of challenging fun!
For me, there’s nothing more exhilarating than ascending five stories up.
The gym offers a state of the art rock climbing experience where you can scale 5000 square feet of boulders. Or, you can climb high into the sky….and descend five stories down.
What are the fitness benefits of rock climbing?
If you’re thinking all of this sounds scary, too difficult, or way outside of your fitness comfort zone, you should challenge that thought!
The advantage of Summit is that it’s a controlled setting with thoughtfully designed routes on the wall. The routes are color-coded, offering easy climbs for the novice, or advanced levels to challenge more advanced climbers.
Rock climbing is a full-body workout, power-packed with physical benefits. You don’t have to lift a single dumbbell to tone up your arms, shoulders, and back. No deadlifts or squats are necessary to work those legs and glutes and you’ll gain forearm strength with each lengthy reach.
Not only does rock climbing tone you up but it strengthens the heart, as well. A climbing session uses energy levels similar to that of running at a pace of 8-11 minutes per mile, ultimately reducing your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
And there are mental health benefits, too. Scaling requires mental alertness to perform tricky hand and footwork. There’s no time to worry about the dishes in the sink or the emails in your inbox. It’s an hour or two to escape and devote your mental energy to something that’s good for you. For some, it’s an entire afternoon or evening of fun.
Are you ready to “climb fit” with me?
On your first visit, Summit’s staff will equip you with a 101 knowledge base so that you can climb carefully. The instructor will show you how to fit into your harness and clip on the ropes. Harnesses and climbing shoes must be snug!
Then – of utmost importance – the guide will teach you how to safely use the belay system. The climber’s rope must remain taut and shouldn’t have a lot of slack in it.
Why is that important?
A few years ago at another climbing facility, I accidentally allowed my husband to fall a few feet and he hit the wall. Oops! And yes, it hurt him. He was climbing faster than I could take the slack out of the rope!
Truthfully, I wasn’t paying close enough attention to my surroundings. As you belay another individual you have to pay attention and stay focused to prevent injuries. (Don’t worry… the expert staff at Summit knows how to prepare their guests for all of the above. They won’t leave you hanging!)
And now comes the really fun part… Rappelling.
To me, rappelling is almost intoxicating! Words can’t describe that sweet sensation or do it justice. It’s one of those things in life that you just have to experience!
To rappel, the climber must let the belayer know they’re ready to ascend the wall. All slack must be taken out of the rope. The climber will put the soles of their shoes into the wall and push off. By pushing away from the wall, it keeps you from smacking into the wall or hitting an anchor. (Summit also has an auto-belay system so you can climb solo.)
You can also boulder away on the small artificial rock formations. The beauty of indoor bouldering – you can climb solo without ropes, and sans a partner! Bouldering also has a specific and safe way to fall. When falling off a boulder you place your arms into the chest…and drop! Then roll onto your back and forward to your feet.
If you’ve never tried it before, please don’t worry. Everyone is a beginner at some point, and the Summit team is there to help.
No climbing gear? Don’t worry about it. At Summit you can inexpensively rent shoes, harnesses, and chalk bags.
Did you know indoor rock climbing can be a family affair?
Next time you’re looking for a family-friendly outing, consider climbing as an option.
The first time I took my family to Summit our eyes were like silver dollars. We stood at the base in awe, taking in the gigantic, colorful climbing walls. My daughter Gracie said, “It’s huge!”
Once we got past the initial awe-factor, it became one of our favorite activities to do as a family. Not only does it get my children off the electronics, but it gets them moving.
We especially love the two-for-one on Tuesday nights. It’s the price of a movie out for our family except we get to laugh, play, and be active together.
Summit is also a great place to help you build strength and stamina to take the adventure outdoors. Sophia Waldron, who has been climbing for 1.5 years, shared, “Summit has helped strengthen my climbing endurance and better prepare me for outdoor expeditions.”
Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly activity or a new way to make fitness fun, Summit could become your new favorite destination.
Founder Kyle Clinkscales shared that he wanted to create an amazing climbing experience that would bring people together. It seems to me that he’s nailed it.
As the name suggests, Summit Climbing, Yoga and Fitness also has a state-of-the-art fitness facility, and an in-house yoga studio.
They offer a variety of classes, after-school programs, camps, private lessons, and more. They’ve found a way to offer fitness, family, and fun all one space!
Tell us… Have you ever tried indoor rock climbing? Leave us a comment and tell us about your experience.
Climbing with Kyle Clinkscales – Hustle & Pro Sports Podcast