We all know that most New Year’s resolutions don’t begin on January 1st. For many of us, New Year’s Day is spent recovering from a sore head, and by the 2nd we’ve still got so many Christmas goodies left to eat that it feels pointless to start a health kick before Monday.
By now, we’re all back at work and it’s getting harder (in my experience, at least!) to make excuses… We’re into January proper, and it’s time to get going on those 2020 goals.
But what if you haven’t got one? Here at our climbing centre in North Devon, most of our resolutions are climbing related – climb harder, achieve a certain grade, or even just climb more frequently. However, if you’re new to the sport – or you’ve never tried it – we think climbing should be your New Year’s resolution, too.
Here are five reasons why we think you should learn to climb in 2020.
A New Year’s resolution to last
Do you make the same vague resolution each year? If you find it hard to stick to resolutions like ‘get fit’ or ‘exercise more’, you’re not alone – it’s notoriously hard to carry on these kinds of goals all year. The main reason for this is that we give ourselves too much to do, with too little direction. The easiest way to fulfil your aims is to choose a goal that is more achievable – and that means being more specific.
Climbing is a great all-round fitness activity, improving your strength, increasing your flexibility and giving you a full-body workout with elements of cardio and toning. This makes it the perfect sport to commit yourself to participate in if you usually find it hard to keep going to the gym. It’s much easier to follow through with the goal of “I’m going to climb once a week” than simply “exercise more”.
Once you’ve learned to climb independently, you could join one of our club nights, such as Exmoor Climbing Club on a Wednesday evening or Ladies’ Night on a Monday. This will give you an extra push to keep coming back and getting some climbing in on a regular basis.
Get fit the fun way
The other surefire way to motivate yourself to stick to your New Year’s fitness resolution is simply to make it fun! Choosing an activity you know you’ll enjoy will greatly increase your chances of sticking with it all year. After all, you’re far more likely to keep doing something you enjoy than something that feels like a chore.
If you’re here, then the likelihood is that climbing might just be that enjoyable and exciting form of exercise. Yes, climbing is great for your physical and mental health, but it is also a whole lot of fun! Whilst climbing, you engage your physical dexterity and mental problem-solving kills in one, making for a richly varied experience. No two climbs are the same – especially when we re-set the centre so often!
When you learn to climb, getting a good workout is something to look forward to – you’ll hardly notice how hard you’re working as you try to complete your latest ‘project’!
Learn to climb and make new friends
One of the biggest barriers for people trying to get into a new sport is not having anyone to try it with. Luckily, you can climb alone on the bouldering walls or autobelay. However, you can also make some great new friends through climbing.
Climbing is an inherently sociable sport (although it does also have a reputation for its insular side, with “lone wolf’ climbers – or solo-ers as they prefer to be called – such as Alex Honnold scaling thousand-odd-metre cliffs all alone.)
But for the most part, climbers are very sociable and tend to climb in groups. Top roping and lead climbing definitely require belaying, making them social by default because you have to climb in pairs. It’s a quick way to make friends because you literally put your life into another’s hands.
The more you climb, the better you will get to know your local fellow climbers, and then you can even organise outdoor trips together. Here at Rock and Rapid Adventures, we run a Ladies’ Night climbing club every Monday from 7 pm, and Exmoor Climbing Club on Wednesday evenings, which are both a great ‘in’ for novice climbers looking to socialise.
Climbing in the Olympic spotlight
2020 is a big year for climbing, because for the first time ever, the sport is set to be featured in the 2020 Olympics! This summer, the Tokyo Olympic Games will feature sport (lead) climbing, bouldering and speed climbing, with climbers from all over the world going for gold.
Of course, this global recognition of climbing has led to a huge boost in coverage of the sport – and in the numbers of people taking it up. Huge investment has been put into UK climbing, from youth development teams to our very own new bouldering centre in North Devon, which opened in late October last year.
So, make the most of this moment of climbing sitting in the spotlight by getting stuck into the sport yourself. Our bouldering room, for example, is only a few months old and offers 400 square metres of awesome bouldering, featuring roofs, slab routes, a central island, arch and much more. So there’s lots of high-quality climbing for you to be doing all year!
Get a climbing induction for just £10!
The other thing we know January for besides New Year are the January sales. Well, you’ll be pleased to hear that you can even get a discount on learning to climb throughout January at Rock and Rapid Adventures! Book a rock climbing induction for any time in January 2020 and you will only have to pay £10 (the usual cost for this course is £25) – and you’ll also get your annual membership for FREE (usually £10). This is an amazing saving of £25.
A climbing induction is the climbing course that you need to complete with an instructor in order to become an independent climber. You’ll learn all about the safety knots, how to belay and much more, and then be signed 0ff to come in any time to climb on your own. This is something anyone who plans to start climbing regularly should do – and January is the best time to do so!
So as you can see, if you want to learn to climb in North Devon, now is absolutely the time to get started! So what are you waiting for?! To book a taster session or climbing induction, click here to select a session or contact us on 01769 309 003.