Even experienced rock climbers can find themselves out of their comfort zones surprisingly frequently. Being prepared for these moments can make all the difference.
If you love your climbing, and you don’t want to let fear get in the way of reaching your goals, here are some tips for what to do when the going gets tough to ensure you stay safe and have a great time—as well as having a good story to tell at the end of it.
Panic may not be a word that you want to even think about, but some moments can get pretty hairy when you are on the side of a mountain, and you are going to need to keep your cool.
Rock climbing is great for the mind and body, but it can also be pretty scary, and panic can set in.
Panicking will only make things worse. You won’t think clearly, you’re more likely to make a mistake, and that could be bad.
Take some time out, relax, and plan your next move with a clear head. Breathe in deeply and slowly, and you’re more likely to avoid anxiety and make the right decision.
Remind Yourself of the Basics
Bending your arms when hanging uses up valuable energy reserves, while hanging from straight arms won’t drain your muscles; you know this, but it’s easy to forget it when you most need it because bending the arms is a natural instinct.
Try to focus on this when you are climbing, and remember the basics. Then save yourself energy and continue with the climb.
Find Out What Awaits You
You might go off traveling all over the place. Once you have a good set of wheels like a Jeep Patriot that can get you through tough terrain, there is no stopping you.
But that can easily encourage you to try out climbs in unfamiliar territory. This is exciting, but if you want to stay safe, make sure you find out a bit about the climbs in advance.
Talk to local climbers and get tips from them. They should be able to prepare you for the worst, helping you to avoid any nasty surprises half-way up.
Always Double Check Your Kit
The one thing you don’t want to happen when you are halfway up a climb is for your gear to let you down. So don’t get into this situation in the first place.
Make sure you check and double check all your gear before you even leaves home, and again before you begin the climb. You want to be able to rely 100% on all your gear, and this will give you more confidence to tackle any climb.
Plan Your Route
Plan your climb at the bottom, and pick out points where you will rest. Plan it in stages, and be clear about what those stages are before you start. This is just sensible, and it will help you to tackle the climb with greater confidence.
Prepare for Everything
You may love going out of your comfort zone. But whether you like it or not, it’s going to happen at some point. Whatever your experience level, and whatever type of climbing you enjoy, make sure you prepare for these difficult moments, so you’ll know what to do and you will keep calm when they happen to you.
Mike Reagan is an adrenaline junkie who loves travel and adventure. He enjoys rock climbing, off-roading and anything that is deemed ‘out of the ordinary’!