This article was originally written for the Hilltop Views.
Austinites have hit the trails, pavement, and lakes for their physical workouts and outdoor activities over the last few years, but now they’re hitting the wall—the rock wall.
On their site, Austin Rock Gym asserts that rock climbing promotes confidence, coordination and balance, muscle development, teamwork, problem solving skills, and much more in a safe, supportive, and fun environment.
When asked why she rock climbs, sophomore Amy Frugé said replied that she was an “adrenaline junky always looking for new adventures and challenges.” She continues, “Climbing is my joy! After a bad day, one of the best things to lift my spirits is going out for a climb. It’s stress-relieving; strength, coordination, and balance-building; and a great excuse to enjoy a beautiful day outside!”
Junior Brett Powers agreed, “I had so much fun the first time [I went rock climbing] that I have been going back ever since. Rock climbing has a lot of health benefits for the mind and body. It is a great way to gain functional strength. It can also be an exhilarating mental challenge, mixing adrenaline with extreme focus. For this very reason, climbing can also be an excellent stress reliever or a great way to get your mind off things. After a few hour of climbing, you will often find yourself mentally and physically exhausted without ever realizing how hard you worked.”
[R]ock climbing promotes confidence, coordination and balance, muscle development, teamwork, problem solving skills, and much more in a safe, supportive, and fun environment.
For those with hesitations in regards to safety, Austin Rock Gym’s site assures customers that the gym is a safety-oriented facility. Their walls are professionally engineered and certified by the Climbing Wall Industry Group and all of their equipment is inspected daily.
Austin Rock Gym also offers various classes, including courses in basic rock climbing, indoor climbing, and outdoor climbing. You may also opt for private climbing lessons where you will receive one-on-one instruction by a certified, experienced climbing instructor.
“To get started in Austin,” Frugé recommends, “I would suggest going through a belay safety course at Austin Rock Gym. You will learn the commands of belaying another climber (using the rope and equipment correctly while another climber is on the wall). They [also] provide you with rental shoes and [a] harness for the day.” Powers also enjoys going to Austin Rock Gym, “It is a big indoor facility with rock climbing walls of all varieties and grades.”
Powers mentions, however, that a downside to climbing is it “can be somewhat expensive if you don’t have your own gear and need instruction before you rent. However, at Austin Rock Gym, you will get your money’s worth because gear, an introduction lesson to belaying, and a full day spent there are all included. [But otherwise], rock climbing is a great way to work out, stress-relieve, and spend time with friends.”
Frugé endorses rock climbing enthusiastically, commending the pastime for its physical, as well as mental, workout. “I like to look at [rock climbing] with the connection of fear and awe. The more fear you overcome, the more [in] awe you [are]. Meaning, the higher you climb, the greater the rewards.”
Austin Rock Gym Locations
North Austin Rock Gym | 8300 N. Lamar, Suite B102 Austin, TX 78753
South Austin Rock Gym | 4401 Freidrich Ln., Suite 300 Austin, TX 78744
Walk-In Day Rates
Belay Safety Course (Required for First-Time Climbers and Includes Day Pass/Rental Equipt.) | $25
Adult Day Pass | $13
Local Student Day Pass (with Valid Student ID) | $11