I have always viewed rock climbing as an extreme sport until I met my husband. Who would have ever thought that Rock climbing and Yoga have something in common? Slow and Steady breaths. Concentration. Flexibility and Co-ordination. These were some of the words that were repeated to me as the grigri was securely fastened. The climbing rope spotting what looked like a figure 8 and the carabiner latched on to my husband’s harness.
Now as I placed my foot on the first climbing hold followed by my hands holding onto dear life, I take slow and steady breaths. The all crucial breathing in and out through the nose. Something we learn in Yoga from the get go. It lends a hand to calming nerves, releases acute muscle tensions and helps reduce emotional and mental anxiety.
Next came me looking for a climbing hold I could get my fingers into as I stretched my legs outward, bending me in ways I never thought possible. Flexibility. For thousands of years, Yoga has been known to improve flexibility through dynamic contractions or engagements of our muscles.
I scan what lies ahead of me. Quickly imagining the routes I would take. Trying not to look down, I take the plunge. I jump to the next available climbing hold. Concentration and Co-Ordination. Shirshasana or the headstand, is known to increase the blood flow to your brain fostering awareness and sharpness.
I survive the thrust of my jump as I near the peak not knowing I had completed my route to the top. I hear cheers from below. My husband elated. He lets me down slowly as I reminisce my ascent to the summit of rock climbing and ready myself for the next climb.