Get into Bouldering

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To understand Bouldering in an instant, think of Rock Climbing. The difference between the two is that rock climbing can get you very high up enough that you need safety ropes. Bouldering on the other hand and especially indoor bouldering is all about solving problems. You have many climbing techniques you can use but how do you get as far as you can with different a combination of the different techniques. Hanging off holds and pulling up your own weight does also build up strength, and agility.

If you have the choice of indoor bouldering or going to a traditional gym, I have found that I certainly get bored at the gym, at the bouldering venue I find I can spend over an hour of climbing without even thinking about the time, which means I will invariably go more often.

We go as a family. My Son was looking for a new activity that wasn’t repetitive, was more social, and appealed to his logical mind of solving problems. He loves going. My younger son is very skilled at bouldering too, he reached the advanced levels very quickly. Bouldering allows you to measure your progress and improvements as you learn techniques, grow stronger and become more flexible until you can climb steep angled gradients whilst pulling up your body weight or even be able to grip the smallest holds at a perfect angle. The floor is structured like a very stiff mattress so that there is a low risk of injury if you fall. The incremental progress and increasing levels of difficulty is marked by having coloured holds, pink holds being the easiest, then purple, then yellow etc. so there is a great level of scope for improvement and perfecting your skill, and to ensure things are kept interesting they create new bouldering problems at all colour levels every month, so the routes and hold types are taken down and rearranged to keep even the most ADHD individual satisfied.

What are the benefits of bouldering you may ask and will I be able to maintain a skill level? Well I am over 50 years old and slightly overweight, and have been going once or twice a week for the last 4 months. I am at a point now where I have improved onto the yellow routes which I do find very challenging and struggle with most of them. At the moment, pink and purple I can do with ease however I know I have improved in strength. I can pull up my own body weight and it will take consistency and time to be able to do a series of pull ups. The other benefit, especially at my age is the ability to stretch high up which will keep my back and spine active, along with the strength you need in the legs and knees to help to get the lift. The overall thing to note is that just like cycling and swimming, the activity is low impact to your body and its something you can keep on doing till your very old age. For younger people, they will improve rapidly and its so much fun.

Find out about local bouldering in KMWALTR #004

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