The origins of climbing date back to prehistoric times when the mountain peoples had to face climbs in rock walls to move between the difficult mountain territories.
Hunting, grazing and trade required the overcoming of many natural obstacles, in particular the world of slopes and rock walls. It is thanks to the need to tackle the rugged territory that man begins to develop a climbing technique which over the course of thousands of years has been perfected to the point of reaching the discipline we know as "climbing".
With modern means of transport, rock climbing is no longer a necessity for man, however history has not erased it but has transformed it into a sport that has millions of fans all over the world.
Today climbing is practiced all over the world with related bodies that determine the rules and guidelines for correct practice.
From a physical point of view it requires good maximum strength, resistance to effort and agility, characteristics that do not always constitute an obstacle to those who approach this sport but rather! Practicing this sport also allows those who cannot boast great physical skills to train and transform this discipline into a real physical and psychological gym.
It must be emphasized, however, that experience plays a fundamental role in this discipline, therefore even the best physically prepared individuals must make a journey of growth to be able to face this sport.
In addition to the physical aspect, climbing contains a moral aspect. Climbing has always summed up the values of the mountain. This sport, often practiced in pairs (or more people), requires great teamwork, so climbing teaches loyalty, solidarity, sincerity.
Climbing over the years has undergone various changes and has seen the birth of various types and different ways to practice it.
We could say that now "prehistoric climbing" can be found in "free solo" a discipline that involves climbing a rock face without the aid of a harness or means of protection.
Given the danger of "free solo", other types of rock climbing have spread to the point that today free soloing is practiced only by great climbers with exceptional skills with years and years of experience behind them.
Modern rock climbing makes use of various protection tools (harness, brackets, hooks, nails, nuts, ropes, friends, descenders, quickdraws ...) which ensure adequate safety measures for a sporting experience that is as safe as possible.
The different types of climbing also differ in the use of the equipment. For example, in some disciplines the rope is used only as a safety aid while in others the rope becomes a real climbing tool and also serves to rest the climber.
Indoor climbing and rock gyms
Climbing is a sport closely linked to the nature factor, it is in fact influenced by what may be atmospheric factors such as rain, wind and frost. To prevent these factors from becoming barriers to the sporting growth of this discipline, "indoor rock gyms" were born. Centers where climbers can train in artificial walls that reproduce the natural rocky environment in a more or less complex way.
The rock gyms or Rocciodromo have given way to indoor climbing which differs from other types because it is not practiced on rock but on artificial fiberglass walls.
Indoor climbing is a real sport that is increasingly detached from rock climbing as it requires skills that are sometimes different from those required in the natural setting.
Indoor training is now one of the fundamental steps for young climbers and those who tackle this discipline for the first time, in the rock gyms you can face different walls with different degrees of difficulty, an indispensable aspect for those who have to undertake a path of sports growth. , moreover, indoor structures offer greater safety tools than practicing on rock.
Over the years, however, the hatred has grown among professional sportsmen on the wall and sportsmen who practice rock climbing. The latter tend to emphasize that indoor training is not comparable to that in nature as rock climbing requires the evaluation of numerous elements not present in training on an artificial wall.
Where to practice and where to learn
Rock climbing is practicable in almost all mountain locations, but the most suitable locations for beginners are the mountain tourist centers where every year the tourism promotion bodies, in collaboration with the CAI, organize courses for beginners and courses for the more experienced who want to move to discover the area and new walls to climb.
The area that has the greatest number of fans is the group of The Dolomites where organizations and climbing schools are present throughout the territory. During the summer, indoor and outdoor courses are organized, often accessible for free and encouraged by the mountain resorts themselves.
Climbing is a sport that must be tried at least once in a lifetime! It is the oldest mountain sport in the world. Its main feature is to put us in direct contact with the mountain by investing all our senses in an adventure that sets us a goal, to reach the summit!
If you love being in contact with nature, touching it and living it then climbing is the right sport for you. An activity that requires physical effort and patience but that can offer great satisfaction.
Climbing is above all discovery, new places, unspoiled mountain corners with magnificent views, an adventure to discover nature and yourself!
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