Climbing has historically been viewed as an activity done only by young care-free, reckless youth, who throw caution to the wind in an attempt to shorten their own lives, by attempting to scale challenging mountains or cliffs. A closer look reveals redundant safety systems and refined rope techniques, combined with unmatched skills on vertical terrain.
So naturally many who enjoy this sport go on to climb for many years. With improvements made in equipment and advancements in shoe rubber, climbing has become safer and has gained popularity. Indoor climbing gyms have made vertical walls more accessible to more flatlanders.
Climbing not only promotes fitness and heightened awareness, but it is also a very social activity where friends can gather and share experiences that can last a lifetime. Getting started can be a little overwhelming, especially for someone who has never set foot on rock, but it can be as easy as going down to your local climbing shop or indoor gym. Instructional videos and books can be very helpful, but nothing compares to personal instruction.
Help from a certified AMGA (America Mountain Guide Association) guide is a great way to start off. Top-roping is a safe way for beginners to learn the ropes. With the security of a rope anchored overhead between the climber and the belayer, a falling climber is stopped immediately, enhancing the feeling of security and safety.