The Art of Tree Climbing – A Sport that can Save Nature & Restore your Health

man climbing trees

Many people today climbed trees when they were younger and if you did too, that feeling of freedom, exhilaration, and accomplishment is hard to forget. Even though as kids it was done for the fun of it, as an adult, you begin to get invites to take it a little seriously, and who knows, it might just become a vocation for you. Here, we will be taking a look at the often-neglected sphere of tree climbing and the gains it has to offer to those who can’t forget the childhood thrill they got out of it.

Professional Tree Climbing

When we say professional tree climbing, tree climbing as a sport immediately comes to mind. The International Tree Climbing Championship (ITCC) is an annual competition held to show some of the best skills by most of the gifted arborists around the world. Each professional climber is expected to safely maneuver and climb a tree, while also executing other tree-care duties with a specified time limit. Activities like branch pruning, emergency aerial rescue and limb walking are all checked for deftness and speed; all these giving nature a thrilling feel.

The ITCC is usually undertaken by majorly professional arborists who are also called tree surgeons. They use harnesses and ropes which makes climbing safer and expensive, and even though it is costly and differs from the natural tree climbing challenge youngsters undertake, it gets kids away from the computer screens they’ve become so addicted to and brings them in contact with nature. This method helps them reach high heights, giving them real adrenaline rush and probably help them make a hobby out of it, as many adult tree climbers globally have done. Despite other careers available to tree climbers like treehouse and zipline construction, arboriculture research and aerial rigging for picture or video capture, arborists remain the most in-demand tree climbers because they work to ensure city environments and greenery are safe for those around. Climbing tall and dangerous trees take a lot of training and mastery, and some high-quality arborist equipment to help properly maneuver around the foliage and prevent harmful long falls, as it is no simple task.

Canopy Ecotourism 

Canopy tourism, as an aspect of ecotourism, is a new trend coming up from the Brazilian Amazon rainforest basin and is the best recommendation for anyone looking to try the first-hand experience on tree scaling. Despite its numerous benefits, ecotourism centers around 3 main advantages around the area it operates. It may be surprising to know that this 10-meter thick canopy is dwelling to almost 90 percent of the rainforest animals. 

Professional tree climbers offer a range of services from hour-long tours to full-week treks along these canopies. For those who would rather ride 100ft above ground, Zipline systems are available to provide this wonderful experience.

Tree Climbing Can Improve Your Health 

Tree climbing aids in developing children physically and even mentally. When kids step, push, squat, lunge themselves when they climb, they work their large motor skills. They also exercise these motor skills when they use, say their hands to hold a branch while swinging on to another or when adjusting their grip on a branch. Tree climbing serves as a whole-body activity as it requires both of these skill sets simultaneously. It works and improves on dexterity, balance, strength, coordination and spatial awareness. It is a nice workout routine that cloaks itself as play.

Tree climbing also improves working memory, which is an ability to extract information from short term memory while actively carrying out a task. Studies show that when researchers gave their subjects dynamic, physically endearing activities before a working memory test like walking a balance beam or tree climbing, their scores sported a 50% increase, which is quite an impressive improvement. Maybe this means that the focus one needs to climb a tree prepares the brain for the next task at hand and also keeps the mind sharp.

Tree Assisted Therapy

Tree climbing can be a great sport, profession and/or tourist experience. To assert its healing ability and rehabilitative gifts to the list by a Japanese no-profit organization, Treehab, a program led by Dr. John Gathright aids disabled children encounter the therapeutic effect of tree climbing. Treehab has designed special adaptive gear and also established training programs to enable people with special needs to climb trees for both rehabilitative and recreational purposes, which provide a sense of achievement, thus helping transform lives as the years go by.

The One-of-a-kind Experience Of Climbing A Tree 

The treetop canopies are an ecosystem undisturbed and often forgotten, and thanks to adequate training equipment that help conserve its delicate existence. The physical and mental challenges needed so not affect the therapeutic and meditative benefits of tree climbing. If you ever scaled trees at home as a child, you should revisit the same challenge now you’re an adult to gain entry to living nature, confounding awe and knowledge for the ecosystems that grow above.

Every day, we get news of constant damage to the environment; another waterway polluted, another drainage system blocked, another species on the brink of extinction, etc. Now more than ever, people who can spearhead these issues are needed, so we encourage enough young people to climb trees and gain exposure to nature, to become future stewards of Earth. Encouraging children to climb is a great way to introduce them to nature, enabling them to develop relationships with nature that should last a lifetime.

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