A parent of two fantastic NICAS students explains why climbing is their new found sport, what NICAS entails, and the range of benefits it provides for her children.
My son (age 13) was introduced to the NICAS climbing course at Summit Up in Oldham by a friend. After a half term block, I decided that my younger daughter (age 12) might also like to join.
She’s a dancer and very flexible so she took to climbing instantly. We come every Monday from 6-8pm.
There is a cycle of different instructors but they are all really friendly and great with my children. Safety is really important it the instructors also make the sessions fun.
I’m really impressed with this new found sport. Not only is it physically demanding, it also develops resilience, problem solving skills, determination and trust in your partner.
The instructors supervise diligently teaching knots, rope techniques and belaying skills. They offer support when needed and use specific praise so that my children know how to improve.
The children get a log book to record their climbs and the instructors tick off skills as they have been achieved. My children have both received their Level 1 NICAS certificates and are working towards Level 2.
My son is working towards the bronze Duke of Edinburgh and this climbing course counts as the Physical component.
Both children look forward to coming each week and have made friends within the group. I enjoy sitting with a coffee and a book whilst they climb!
Elliot has started climbing sessions with Sarah, at Summit Up, which has been fantastic! Climbing has such a positive impact on him. It is so good for his physical fitness and each time he climbs, we see him really having to work hard and use his problem-solving skills. Most important of all, he clearly really enjoys it!
I needed a sport that gave me the sense of adventure I was missing in my life....If I had an addiction, it would be climbing. I just can’t imagine living without it.
For anyone thinking of starting climbing, Tim's advice is simple, "It's less about your arms than you think. If you can climb a flight of stairs, then you are able to climb a rock climb."