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New Meetup: Sportrock Alexandria: 7/23

From: Jim M
Sent on: Tuesday, July 8, 2008 2:31 PM
Announcing a new Meetup for The VA/MD/DC Rock Climber's Meetup Group!

What: Sportrock Alexandria: 7/23

When: July 23,[masked]:30 PM

Where: Click the link below to find out!

Who should come: Anyone who wants to climb, even if you've never done it before.

Meetup Description: Let me guess, you're waiting for a bunch of other 'newbies' to RSVP because you don't want to be the only one. Well, you can do that, but there's no reason to wait. I've been climbing (off and on) for over 10 years and I really enjoy introducing new people to the sport?that's why I'm an organizer. If you're the only beginner that night, it means you'll get that much more personal attention and you'll get to do that much more climbing.

If you already know how to climb but don't have anyone to climb with, this is a great way to guarantee you'll have someone to belay you (autobelayers, blech!) and you'll meet other climbers.

Sportrock is an indoor climbing center with climbing for all levels. We will be meeting at 7:30pm at one of the 2 tables in front of the side room with exercise equipment. I'll be wearing my brown "Meetup" trucker hat. The normal cost is $18 for a day pass to use the gym. If you tell the staff you are with the meetup group they usually discount the day pass price to $14. It's $6.50 to rent climbing shoes and a harness, or you can bring your own gear if you have it.


5308 Eisenhower Avenue
Alexandria, VA 22304

Please try to be on time, especially if you have never climbed at Sportrock before. The staff would like to go over some basic policies and give you a belay test (if you already know how to climb).

What to bring: This is *indoor* climbing, so dress for the gym not the mountains. If you wear shorts, you'll probably want them at least mid-thigh in length so the harness straps won't be on your bare skin (though it isn't really a problem if you wear short shorts). I recommend you also bring a water bottle, but they do have a water fountain and sell drinks. Finally, there are some lockers (though there often all in use) that you can use so you may want to bring a lock. But if you're driving, it's probably just easier to leave all your stuff in your car.

What to expect: After you've paid, signed the release form, and been given your rental gear, put anything you don't want to carry up the wall with you (except a drink bottle) in a locker/cubby/car and then find me at one of the small tables behind the front counter. I usually hang a small Meetup sign over the edge of the table. If you don't see me when you get there, ask the staff where the meetup group is and mention my name (Adam). If you've never climbed before, I'll show you how to put on your harness and then I'll show you how to climb. We'll be doing "top rope" climbing, which means that the rope runs from your harness, to the top of the climbing wall (that's why it's called TOP rope climbing) and then to the belayer?me. For insurance purposes, Sportrock only allows their staff to teach people how to tie the knots and how to belay. This is good for beginners because all you need to worry about is climbing. I'll tie you in and then tie myself in, and then you're climbing. The climb itself will only take a few minutes. If there are other beginners, you'll all rotate. If not, you can keep doing different climbs (the gym has dozens of different "routes"). Either way, after a few climbs you'll probably be exhausted and you'll just want to watch the other climbers?with a new appreciation for what they're doing. If it's your first time, your arms will probably be tired by 9pm. The gym is open until 11pm and I usually stay until around 10pm. You can leave whenever you want.

One final note: If this is your first time climbing or you haven't climbed in a long while, your forearms will be really sore the next day. Holding onto the wall uses muscles that you don't normally exercise. Once you've been to the gym a few times, those muscles will build up and you won't be sore the next day.


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