This time of year creates a kind of paradox. It’s resolution season for many people who are looking to get in shape, yet it’s the time of year when avid exercisers can start to lose the will to work out. After all, it’s cold and dreary outside. That alone makes it a bit tough to schlep out the door, defrost the windshield, and head for the same old workout.
Fortunately, there are ways to mix up your fitness routine and work up new excitement at the same time. Indoor rock climbing is one such way to defrost that old routine. But, climbing is not simply off the beaten path, it offers several fitness benefits as well.
You Train Your Muscles
You likely guessed that your arms, shoulders, and back will get a nice workout on a rock climbing wall, and you’re absolutely correct. Using the muscles in your arms, shoulders, and back is what steadies you on the climb and helps you pull yourself up against gravity.
But, when the footholds get tricky and far spread, your legs and core will also be on that team of hard workers. Also, don’t be surprised when you find your upper thighs and glutes gaining definition and becoming toned.
You Focus on Yourself
There is a saying in the running community regarding indoor workouts at the gym: “If you are running on the treadmill next to me, then yes, we are in fact racing.” It’s supposed to be a cute joke, but you get the gist of the general competitiveness that can come out.
In the cycle room, the word is “attack,” and everyone whips up to a frenzied pace to (mentally) pull ahead of the pack.
But, while learning a new skill, it’s possible to forget the pressure we sometimes put on ourselves when we want the current workout to always surpass, or at least equal, the previous. On the climbing wall, you concentrate on your hand and foot positioning and where you’ll move next to work your way up. You’ll be listening to your coach, support partner, or only your own thoughts.
That type of environment sets the stage for stress relief and the ability to focus only on the single activity at hand.
Climbing Presents a Goal You Can See
You want to make it to the top of the climb, right? You see the layout and get to use strategy and logic in plotting your way up the wall. In that way, you can literally see your goal as you work.
How’s that for a bit of extra motivation?
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