A couple of weeks ago we really slowed down from our already pretty slow lifestyle. We went to visit our good friends Anna and Lukas in their family holiday home in Alsace – a green and hilly French region close to the German border.
This house is a real hidden gem. Nestled in the midst of a thick forest, it is only accessible via a narrow and bumpy dirt track, on which our Ford Transit nearly bottomed out. The building is off the grid. It is powered by batteries and a generator, with a boiler heating up the water, but has no central heating or electricity. Which meant fires every night for warmth and small battery powered lights to get around at night.
More and more climbers are discovering yoga, and for good reason. Yoga is about a lot more than just bending. Yes, it helps you improve your flexibility, but it can also help you to build mental and physical strength. All of these have the potential to take your climbing to the next level.
“If this is your first Acro yoga lesson, it has been a bit of a baptism of fire,” said Jaqui Wan, the AcroYoga teacher who had just put us through two hours of trying to do things we didn’t know our bodies could do.
It turned out that in fact our bodies couldn’t really do these things, just as we had expected. We watched in awe as some of the more experienced AcroYogis flipped each other around – or “manhandled”, as Jaqui called it.
I had tried AcroYoga only twice before, and the first time was a very short experience, but I fell in love with it at first flight, so to speak.
“Guys…why don’t we actually try and make something out of this climbing obsession?” – those were the words of my climbing partner Valentina and our just-as-obsessed friend Tamsin as we were having dinner one Sunday night after another weekend outdoors.
Suddenly, this seemed like the perfect idea. We live and breathe this sport right now, surely we can share all the things we’re learning with other people taking up the sport for the first time, or those deciding to commit to it with renewed vigour.
Luckily for us, Tamsin happens to be an ex film student and exceptionally skilled with the camera (though she will never admit it!). The concept for the videos was an easy one to come up with – though we’re still perfecting it, of course, and will be for a long time.
I’ve always wanted to try out slacklining, but between climbing, work events, and attempting to still see my non-climbing friends, I’ve found it hard to find the time for it. Now that I’m injured seemed like the perfect time to give it a shot.
So on a Sunday my friends and I took advantage of the nice weather and took the slackline out for a day in East London’s Victoria park (along with a hula hoop for good measure).