Despite being extremely difficult and potentially life-threatening, rock climbing is one of the best activities for strengthening both your physical and mental sides.
The general health benefits that come with rock climbing are like none other. Regardless if you’re in the open or in an indoor gym, rock climbing will strengthen your body and mind and make it impenetrable.
If you ever wanted to know what it takes to be a rock climber, then do know that it takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and a complete revamp of your lifestyle.
This activity isn’t something that you can simply pull out when in the middle of it, so having the right mentality is key for success.
With all that said, we are here to tell you the 2 physical and mental benefits of rock climbing. This article will serve as a complete guide for getting into the sport by detailing how your body and mind benefits from it.
Without wasting too much of your time, let’s start.
Physical Benefit 01: Muscles And Endurance
Having a friendly conversation when a professional in the sport will eventually lead to a discussion regarding which muscles are mostly impacted by practicing it.
While the ordinary person might think that this activity requires lower-body strength, experts suggest otherwise. This activity requires you to have impeccable upper-body, strength since you will be climbing and pulling yourself up through your hands. With all that said, having no lower-body strength will result in a complete failure, so you’ll have to work equally on that.
For you to make it as a rock climber, you’ll need to tick the boxes of a lot of physical factors such as both upper and lower body, footwork, and lean muscle mass.
But don’t think that’s all of it. You can imagine how hard and how exhausting climbing mountains could be. That’s why it’s safe to say that you’ll be doing a lot of cardio. As a matter of fact, climbing rocks is the best way to get your heart racing fast. It does this better than any form of running, sport, or any other physical activity.
It is generally considered as true that a one-hour climbing session can burn more than 700 cal.
Mental Benefit 01: Boosting Brain Functions
On top of being one of the best ways to jack yourself up and give you the endurance of a tiger, rock climbing is a brilliant sport that focuses heavily on problem-solving.
Just think about it for a second. You’re out in the open and you’re climbing a fairly large rock. One wrong move and it could be potentially fatal. So what are your options in this situation? Well, there’s only one option. You either make it to the top or you fall back at the bottom.
You can imagine how huge this problem can be. Problem-solving is even more required and used in a subcategory of rock climbing called bouldering. In bouldering, you climb large rocks and mountains without any ropes to save you from a fall.
Even if you are not an excellent problem-solver, you will eventually develop these skills by practicing the sport.
Having the strength and mentality to succeed in the sport is only aided through the use of gear. Your options are endless when browsing gear for the purpose of going on your first climbing session.
But you should be extra careful in selecting gear as you always want to buy the best of everything. This isn’t the case in other activities and sports such as football, for example, where you are fairly exposed to risks, so the safest option would always be to buy quality equipment.
Some of the things you’ll need include ropes, courts, webbings, carabiners, harnesses, shoes, helmets, hexes, group savers, and other essential gear for both training and protection.
But there’s a subcategory of equipment labeled as “miscellaneous”, and these are equally important for you to achieve a successful outcome. Some of the things include tape, haul bags, gears slings, and of course, chalk.
Chalk is a very important miscellaneous item that every rock climber and boulder uses every single time they go out in the open or in the gym. Chalk prevents moisture-generating to your hands, which can ultimately compromise the climbing and be potentially life-threatening. If you’re interested in knowing what type of chalk works best, then make sure to click here.
Physical Benefit 02: Greater Flexibility
Apart from offering a total body workout, it’s pretty safe to say that rock climbing will give you the much needed-flexibility you’ve always been looking for.
Since most of your time spent in the activity will revolve around reaching and pulling yourself, all that can have a major impact on your ability to adapt and flex your body to reach the next handhold.
The flexibility benefit is also beneficial for other things in life. For example, having a flexible body means that you’ll experience less muscle and joint injuries throughout your life. But not only that, you’ll tend to recover from existing injuries and future injuries significantly faster than other people.
Mental Benefit 02: Reducing Stress
You might think otherwise if you’re in the position where you need to jump from one side of the rock to another, but this activity actually reduces stress by increasing the levels of norepinephrine in our brains.
The more norepinephrine our brains produce, the less likely we will respond to stress. Stress as you all know is one of the biggest killers on our planet. Stress is single-handedly responsible for so many illnesses and conditions that can destroy whole families.
And one of the cures for it comes through rock climbing. According to research from Indiana University, climbers that immersed themselves in the climbing experience registered higher norepinephrine levels in their brains. But not only that, the research also showed that the climbers would also create a sense of euphoria even block their brains from registering pain.
This study showed that rock climbing can completely change a person’s mindset for the better. If you’re a person that generally experiences high levels of stress on a daily basis, then a smart thing would be to try rock climbing.