Rocking and rolling with Hamline’s Climbing Club

Rocking and rolling with Hamline’s Climbing Club

Hamline students were spotted clawing up colored walls and dangling from the ceiling of St Paul’s Vertical Endeavors during Climbing Club’s top rope event, held on Thursday, Feb. 22. For Pipers trying to get some physical activity in, this club is a great place to attain a full-body workout as well as finding a sense of community on campus.
“Many of the people I’ve met at Hamline are through the Climbing Club,” freshman Eli White said, who has recently taken up the position of Event Coordinator for the club. Before hitting the road, many climbers chatted and shared laughs with each other as early as an hour before the event’s actual start time.
Climbing Club had a resurrection from the grave during the 2021 school year after the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic put a kibosh on extracurricular clubs being able to hold events, alongside other conflicts that caused the original club to retire back in 2019. The club however,despite everything,has gained a lot of traction during this time of renewal, and present-day it is even one of the highest-grossing clubs on Hamline’s campus in terms of new members and returners. It is clear that there is an immersive appeal to the activity.
“I think the act of climbing itself is pretty unique. It is probably just the most fun way to exercise in my opinion,” sophmore Anders Anthonisen-Brown said, who had just recently strapped in as the new club President in place of Hamline alum Josh Lynch.
Lynch has been widely recognized and credited for the huge strides made within the club during its renewal.
“When I joined, it was my first year at Hamline and Josh and I quickly became friends just through climbing, because we were working on the same kind of problems,” Anthonisen-Brown said. Due to the relaxed yet lively nature of the club, a lot of the more experienced climbers are eager to teach beginners the ropes. For many, Lynch was that friendly face that welcomed anybody and everybody to climb.
“It’s pretty low stakes to be a part of the club… we try to train people and we also have 100% completely free events. So it’s pretty easy to get involved,” Fran Zyla, the Vice President said. One of the most crucial aspects of the club is its approachability. It does not take much to get into climbing besides making the leap of faith to do it.
“When you’re out at the climbing gym or [facing] real rocks, you kind of see these different routes as problems and they’re [meant] to be solved together,”Anthonisen-Brown said. In a way, it can be an act of problem solving and learning to take risks, although with a harness around the waist.
With a relaxed atmosphere and fun way to exercise, both athletes and non-athletes are always returning to overcome some rocks, and even some imitation when it comes to working out.
This recreational org is not going anywhere soon, and one may wonder what they could be missing out on when it comes to Climbing Club.
“What makes it unique is that people stay. People are clearly interested in it. People kind of dip their toe into a lot of clubs, but they keep coming to climbing,” Zyla said.

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