Of course, I’m biased. But, that’s why I own these gyms!
I began climbing when I was 15 at a local climbing area known as Livesy Rock. Since that first fall day, scrambling to the top of a 25 foot piece of stone –wearing a friend’s harness and a pair of oversized, ancient climbing boots–I have never looked back. In nearly 20 years, I have not found another sport that was more satisfying, more fun or more meaningful.
More than a physical activity, more than a mental game, climbing has brought me strength and confidence enough to start two businesses, while helping teach me the balance to enjoy each day. More importantly, climbing has gathered me into a community of supportive, inventive and passionate people the likes of which I never thought to meet in my lifetime.
Why should you climb? The reasons are numerous… it is a great way to get in shape, to lose weight, to meet new and interesting people, to build confidence, to overcome your fear of heights. Climbing is fun; it’s challenging, like solving a vertical puzzle. It’ssatisfying, providing opportunities for accomplishing things you might never believe you could do. It’s addictive; it’s powerful. It teaches self-reliance, as well as teamwork! It is a process, a journey and a destination all rolled up into one. It’s the best mental, emotional and physical workout you can get and you will want to come and do it every day!
But, perhaps the most important reason (other than it’s being fun, did I mention that?), is that climbing teaches you about yourself. It teaches us our limits, and how to move beyond them. It rewards persistence, encourages creativity and commands your attention for hours on end. The longer you climb, the stronger you will become – physically, mentally and emotionally.
I have seen the sport of climbing has change a lot in past 20 years. Climbing gyms have gotten bigger and better, more and more people are taking to the sport. But, despite the changes, those things which make this sport special are still there…the challenge, the people, and the fun. It is my goal to bring that spirit into each PRG Climbing center, to share with each new customer the passion, the camaraderie and the power of this amazing sport.
But, you don’t have to take my word for it. Come down to a Philadelphia Rock Gym and see for yourself. Your first climb is on me!
David H. Rowland
President, Philadelphia Rock Gyms