Rock climbing and bouldering become popular exercise alternative


“I’ve been training for about two years, but wanted something more functional and something a lot of fun,” said Gallery, who only recently started playing the sport.

He spends his morning testing the boulder wall inside Nature of the North in Moorhead.

“Here at Nature of the North, our goal is to bring people outside for the physical and mental health benefits they get,” said owner Jon Walters.

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Nature of the North opened during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, but has been a space for locals to come and fall in love with climbing.

“It’s good that they can come and interact with people without really worrying,” he said. “During the pandemic we realized that a lot of people were forced to go out and they were training three days a week and all of a sudden they were going for a hike and realizing that they weren’t as fit. than they thought. “

Walters voices the effectiveness of rock climbing and its sister, bouldering, when it comes to exercising and keeping your body in shape on days when you can’t always get out for a run or jog. bike.

“You still want to be able to train your body and mind, and the indoor climbing wall is an amazing way to do that,” he said. “The physical aspect of ‘Okay. I just have to grab that and do that. Well, it looked really easy when someone did it, why can’t I?’ And then you start looking again and you realize, ‘Oh, it’s because I need to have more awareness with my body. Where is my weight moving?’

Nature of the North’s boulder wall simulates the different types of surfaces and crevices you might encounter at a site on a path and changes from time to time, but there is a different thing about the wall in the business by Walter.

“We’re not necessarily telling you that you MUST climb the tracks. So if you just want to go up the wall and climb sideways, you absolutely can. You don’t have to go up the tracks. You can just feel it. your body on the wall and feel the different parts and parts of it, “Walters said.” I like to think of it as vertical yoga. “

A way to connect your body and mind through strategic planning of conquering a wall with man-made outlets or in nature. Rock climbing is also good for another purpose like weight lifting, failure training.

“Fail a few times, then come back to the wall and try again,” he said. “Being able to go in and constantly fail is really powerful for the growth aspect… some of it is difficult and you think to yourself, ‘Well, I can never do that next year. But I you want to train to get there ‘, so you keep trying it and trying it. “

For Gallery, finally conquering a certain route on the wall makes all failures worth it.

“It’s really encouraging when you make these improvements. And when you fail a hundred times, but you do it the 101st time, it’s amazing,” Gallery said.

The primary focus of Nature of the North’s boulder wall is always the same for its climbers.

“You start to challenge yourself to functional fitness, instead of ‘Well I go to the gym and I bench, and I run,’ then you do your typical routine,” Walters said. .

Nature du Nord is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday and until 8 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Walk-in users are welcome, they also have a 10-day tour pass and subscription. They are available on Facebook at “Nature du Nord” on Instagram “natureofthenorth_fm” and on the website.