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Why Do Rock Climbing and Dating Go So Well Together?

by Ali Parsons

Getting a Grip on Climbing and Dating

The word is out: rock climbing is really popular. As more and more people rope up and test their strength and fear of heights at both indoor and outdoor locations, what was once a niche activity moves ever closer to the mainstream. If you’re a green dater and interested in expanding your range of activities, consider rock climbing, as it can be a great way to both get to know your partner and have fun overcoming challenges together.

What’s climbing all about?

Rock climbing at its essence, is simple: get to the top of a cliff, boulder, or wall, using only your hands and feet. Ropes and harnesses and other forms of protection are used when needed, and there’s a whole system of ratings for figuring out how hard getting to the top will be. The reason rock climbing is especially suited for dating, though, is that it’s a partner sport. Anyone rock climbing needs a partner to watch for falls and hold the other end of the rope. 

Intimacy through adversity

Climbing is a great choice for a date because it’s difficult. By working together through fear, physical and mental tests, and stressful communication situations you and your partner will work to develop intimacy, and practice through the sport - the very same skills that any healthy relationship should have. Pushing through the challenging aspects of rock climbing together will strengthen your bodies and ultimately be a great metaphor to work toward in your budding relationship. 

Reaching the top, as a team

Because rock climbing, especially when using harnesses and ropes, is a partner sport, it’s essentially concerned with competition. The only goal is that the two of you reach your destination. Because both members of the party have to work together to get there, rock climbing is an exercise in supporting and helping each other. To summit a difficult pitch you’ll need to trust each other and problem solve together, and when you do, it will have been due to mutual respect and teamwork.

Tying it all together 

By choosing rock climbing as a shared activity, you’ll give your new partnership a crucible in which to form a lasting bond. Practicing essential skills and overcoming adversity will help your relationship grow. At the end of a long day out climbing, you’ll be able to look at each other and know that you’re not only getting stronger, you’re growing closer too.

Recommended Next: The Top 10 Things to Do on a Green Date

Ali Parsons is a freelance writer with a background in environmental research.