CONROE (February 18, 2019) – Lone Star College-Montgomery students are known for reaching lofty goals, and, this past Friday, they had the chance to hear from a pro on how to climb even higher.
Lynn Hill, world famous rock climber, visited campus to share her experiences and insights.
In 1990, Hill became the first woman to climb a 5.14 route. Three years later, she made the first free ascent of the once thought impossible route The Nose (5.14a VI) on El Capitan in Yosemite Valley.
During her talk, she discussed not only how her climbing career had developed, but her efforts in protecting the environment and ensuring she and other female climbers were treated equally in their sport.
Hill was contacted by the LSC Climbing Club, led by advisors Tim Cowan, Mead McLean, along with club president Holly Krynicki and vice presidents Oliver Abdulrahim and Katie Scogins.
We sat down with Abdulrahim to get the details on how this incredible opportunity came to be.
How did the climbing club set up this talk with such a famous face in climbing?
Our amazing club advisors, Tim Cowan and Mead McLean, contacted Lynn Hill last semester to organize the event. They’ve worked hard to make everything possible, so Holly and I would like to thank Lynn, Tim, Mead, and everyone who attended our event!
How has Lynn Hill inspired you and the rest of the climbing club?
Obviously, Lynn Hill is a really good climber. We all know that. What makes her even more inspiring is her humility and dedication to the sport. Strong and capable, she is who we all aspire to be both on and off the wall.
How does LSC Climbing Club organize their meetings and club structure?
We have a calendar where you can see all of our planned events and an email list so you can stay up-to-date!
What would you like for everyone to know about LSC Climbing Club?
We are a community of climbers at all levels of experience looking to hang out and support each other! All are welcome to join us during our weekly events at inSPIRE Rock, an indoor climbing gym in Spring. All of our events are free, and we’ll provide all the gear you’ll need – just come and enjoy the climbing!
What other events or excursions does LSC Climbing have in store for this semester?
An outdoor trip to Reimer’s Ranch near Austin is in the works for later this semester! We also want to get out to Enchanted Rock in Llano. Stay tuned by signing up to our email list!
What is the best way for someone interested in climbing to get started?
If you’re looking to get into the sport, whether you’re looking to get active or to just have fun, a great place to jump in is your local climbing gym. There, you’ll get comfortable with moving on the wall and learn the basics of bouldering and sport climbing. Most of all, you’ll have supportive climbers who’ll root for you and eagerly help you improve every step of the way. That’s the kind of community we at the LSC Climbing Club are trying to cultivate!
Would you say climbing helps you with your goals?
Climbing difficult problems takes immense focus and effort. If you’re truly at your limit on the rock wall, you’re going to fail over and over again. Giving what feels like everything you’ve got only to slip off, plummet to the ground, again and again – everyone knows that utterly torturing, frustrating feeling.
And too familiar are those defeated thoughts that follow: ‘Why am I even trying this stupid problem? Why is this so hard for me? Is this even worth it?’ We’ve all experienced that negativity. Sometimes, that’s all that comes to mind, whether we realize it or not.
And watching others practically walk up the problem you’re struggling on doesn’t help, either: ‘It’s so easy for them – I suck at this! Everything they did was perfect! I’ll never be that good or have what they have!’ We’ve all compared ourselves enviously. This brand of idealization is sometimes motivating, but can also erode our sense of worth, whether we realize it or not.
A lot of climbers pour away their mental strength in this manner. Habitual doubt weighs heavily on their shoulders, reinforced by the negativity the mind conjures before, during, and after a fall.
They come to fear failure.
Climbing forces us to be analytical. Part of improving both on and off the wall is practicing mindfulness. The next time destructive thoughts manifest, recognize them. Are they dragging you down? Holding you back? Keeping you from really trying? If so, how can you respond?
Climbing also forces us to relax. We do well on the wall when the mind is emptied of attention and the body is instead given intense focus (such that only the muscles we need are used). Whenever we climb poorly, these roles are reversed. Rather than letting the mind mislead with fear, the body should release that tension and guide with intuition. Rather than stalling in doubt, we should move with intent and confidence. In this way, climbing is a deeply meditative exercise.
It’s safe to say that the LSC Climbing Club is headed for even greater heights, both in the pursuit of athletic and academic greatness.
Lone Star College offers high-quality, low-cost academic transfer and career training education to 99,000 students each semester. LSC is training tomorrow’s workforce today and redefining the community college experience to support student success. Stephen C. Head, Ph.D., serves as chancellor of LSC, the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area with an annual economic impact of nearly $3 billion. LSC consists of six colleges, 10 centers, two university centers, Lone Star Corporate College and LSC-Online. To learn more, visit LoneStar.edu.