Climbing is arguably one of the only sports where gender does not matter. Men and women, though different, each have their own skills and strengths that make them adept climbers. Climbing with men and women is great, however finding a community of women can be an uplifting and irreplaceable experience.
Climbing is a unique exercise for women that differs from traditional running, yoga, or spinning. Climbing challenges both the body and the mind and offers immediate measurable results. No other sport can replicate the adrenaline rush from triumphing over high walls and falling in a controlled environment. Climbing builds confidence as you conquer fears and push yourself higher and higher. Women have the natural ability to climb greater and bigger heights through their flexibility, creativity, and strength-to-weight ratio.
Climbing and women seem to be a match made in heaven, so then why is it men seem to excel higher than women? In studies, men consistently overestimate their abilities and performance while women underestimate both. According to a study published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology “...social scientists have observed that when members of a group are made aware of a negative stereotype, they are more likely to perform according to that stereotype.” A survey done by Climbing found that 76% of people assumed women thought they were weaker simply because they were women. Often, women in the climbing gym feel they are being perceived as weaker, even if that is not the case and this can affect their confidence in their climbing. This is a primary reason why climbing with other women is an empowering experience- it offers space away from negative stereotypes and room to create new expectations.
Since studies show the importance of females lifting each other up in the world of climbing, here are some additional reasons why you should find your climbing tribe right away.
If you are highly skilled and experienced, you can serve as a mentor for women on different levels of their climbing journey.
Each woman can live by example and help their fellow sisters who might be struggling with their climb by giving tips on foot/hand holds, where to rest, and more.
Since women generally have similar skill sets and physique, you can swap beta with someone of similar size and strength.
You can have fun and build relationships with other women that can translate into personal life. After all, what’s better than a girl squad?
It’s inspiring to climb with your peers, but even more so to look up to new accomplishments in the sport of climbing. In February of 2017, Margo Hayes became the first woman to ever complete a route with a 5.15a grade. Also in 2017, Anak Verhoeven paved a path for future climbers at Pierrot Beach, France where she completed a very difficult ascent and graded it a 5.15a. Women are leading the way when it comes to climbing and social media has had a huge influence. Look at heyflashfoxy’s Instagram account which has grown into an amazing community of female climbers and led to the creation of the Women’s Climbing Festival.
It seems that from all aspects women are inspiring each other to reach new heights in the world of climbing. From a local level of community support to broader international accomplishments, female climbers are proving what they are capable of. And, most of all, the importance of finding a tribe to uplift each other along the way.
Rock Out is the perfect place to find your tribe of female climbers, so come out to our gym to connect with other empowering women!