Why climbing is great for kids – by an anxious Mum

Why climbing is great for kids – by an anxious Mum

So, if you’re a kid and you’ve made it to this website then good for you!!!  Climbing is a fantastic sport so, well chosen.  The thing is, do you have that mum – the one that worries too much and made you wear a helmet when you were five years old on your scooter?  The one that thinks climbing is ‘probably too dangerous for you’ and is steering you away?  If so, pass this this on to them and let me see if I can help.

To you, if you are that mum. Congratulations on having a kid with such good taste in sport that they are interested in climbing.  Now, I know you may have seen some of those films like Cliffhanger or the Mission Impossible film opener with Tom Cruise hanging by his finger nails off a sheer ledge but let me steer you into looking at climbing in a different way.

For many kids being good at sport means being the best at football in their class if you’re a boy or the best netball goal shooter if you’re a girl.  If your kid is one of those Alpha types and wants to give climbing a go then good for them, extending their horizons.  The thing is, if your kid is the one who dreads PE day at school because they know they are going to be the last to be chosen by the team captains on that day, then climbing is a fantastic choice for them.  You can be an individual player but at the same time be a part of a very social and supportive group of like-minded people – it’s not a team but it is a community that’s extraordinarily welcoming.

That leads me to my next recommendation for climbing.  It’s not easy being a kid these days.  Anxiety, stress and other mental health issues are rife in that age group as you will well know because you are that mum who worries about those things.  The community aspect of climbing can do wonders for social confidence and self-esteem.  Climbers are a friendly bunch sharing tips on how to get up a route.  I have seen for myself children going from shy introverted individuals climbing on their own to being confident people who are socially engaged at a climbing centre because they have something in common with every individual there no matter how young or old.  That’s a pretty special gift this sport can give if you have concerns in that area.

Lastly, I know you are also that mum who is worried about the amount of gaming and screen time your kid has and the battles that can ensue.  How fantastic therefore to find an avenue of interest for them with all the benefits or increased strength, fitness and the mental health aspects I’ve mentioned above that can take them away from their computer fix for a whole afternoon!!  Now if that’s not worth the climbing centre entry fee I’m not sure what is.

Come on, I know you.  You only want the best for them and to keep them safe, but let them go into the world of climbing and watch them grow and thrive into confident strong individuals and you won’t regret it!!

Article contributed by ‘Anxious Mum’

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