Climbing the walls


Climbing is one of those things I’d always fancied having a go at, but had just never got round to it. When I told this to my husband, he nearly choked on his cup of tea. I mean, I’m not exactly Little Miss Sporty, though I do love a good run (when I have the time and the energy) and getting out there in the fresh air for bracing walks by the beach. But climbing? He hadn’t put me down for that. We’d heard of a few people taking their kids to indoor climbing centres and it looked like fun, and the fact that each child needs an adult to go with them meant I had the perfect excuse to give it a go.

We booked an induction at The Climbing Hangar in Liverpool through a daily deals website, and got the sessions and shoe hire for a bargainous £7 for two people. When we got there, it was effectively a warehouse decked out with climbing walls in four separate rooms, each with thick crash mats to cushion the inevitable falls and walls to suit varying levels of ability. With trance music playing in the background, metal staircases between each floor, and fairly young people walking round in cool sportswear and looking ever so slightly sweaty, it reminded me of the chill-out rooms I’d hung out in at some 1990s raves. This was not a bad thing. Quite the opposite – if climbing has this kind of calming, chilled effect on you, then why aren’t more people doing it? I waited for my induction to start to find out.

Once my five-year-old son and I had changed into our climbing shoes, we followed a group of about 10 people round with an instructor for a few basic safety lessons. Basically, if someone falls off a wall on to you, you’ve had it, so look around you and get up quickly! My boy, who as he is five knows everything there is to know about everything, declared he didn’t need a lesson as he had done it before, at school, but joined in reluctantly anyway. After the talking part was over, we were free to get climbing, so we naturally headed to the kids’ area. This was a smallish room decorated like a castle, with climbing walls up to turreted walkways and a slide coming down one side. In the centre stood a wooden pirate ship, again with footholds to climb up and a smaller slide to get down. My son quickly realised that climbing was maybe a bit too risky for him, and figured out a way of getting up high without actually having to use the walls! Still, he was having a ball and I got to practise a bit of climbing too. It was so much fun, I can definitely see it’s something you’d get hooked on, and would like to go back and maybe give it a bit more of a serious go in the more grown up areas of the centre. For now though, the pirate ship it was, and that was still enough of a challenge for an absolute beginner like me.

As for my son, well, he managed some pretty good climbs in the end. The trick is, hide a lollipop at the top of the wall and he was scurrying up there like his life depended on it. A bit of a cheat, but it worked! We will be going back – we bought a special ticket which meant we could go back three more times for just a fiver. Just remind me to save some money for Chupa Chups.

The Climbing Hangar can be found in Birchall Street, Liverpool.





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  • Reply
    Mini Travellers
    October 1, 2014 at 7:15 am

    Brilliant. We did this once with my SIL and her hubby and kids as they are experts it was great! I’ll link up on the site!

    • Reply
      October 3, 2014 at 11:45 am

      Thank you! Xx

  • Reply
    Karen Hannah
    October 3, 2014 at 8:03 am

    That looks AWESOME! We have a similar place here in Manchester but it’s lots more expensive than that and there isn’t a pirate area – I’ll have to have a word!

    • Reply
      October 3, 2014 at 9:18 am

      I used to live in Manchester and always fancied that one – is it Gorton Monastery? But never made it! Six years later… X

  • Reply
    Mummy Melton
    October 3, 2014 at 11:04 am

    Looks like so much fun and a great price!!! xx

  • Reply
    Rachel @ The Ordinary Lovely
    October 3, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    That looks brilliant although the pirate ship looks like it might be more my level. My eldest is just coming up to four so may wait a year or so before taking him. I think he’s braver than me though.

    • Reply
      October 3, 2014 at 8:50 pm

      I just about managed the pirate ship too!

  • Reply
    October 3, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    I think this is something my eldest would like too, but I am too scared to do it with her! The thought of having to get back down again always scares me enough to never send me up there in the first place! x x x

    • Reply
      October 3, 2014 at 8:49 pm

      It’s not really that high at the Climbing Hangar, it’s more like climbing sideways – or apparently they call it bouldering! I’m a expert now….

  • Reply
    Emma Lander
    October 3, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    Wow that looks amazing and such a different thing to do. I will definitely keep this in mind for the future 🙂

  • Reply
    Ruthy @ Minibreak Mummy
    October 3, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    Oh gosh this is something I’ve always secretly fancied doing – you’ve inspired me to find out more!

    • Reply
      October 3, 2014 at 8:50 pm

      It’s well worth it, nice to find something new and fun to do!

  • Reply
    October 4, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    That looks really fun and a nice thing to do with your son. Your lollipop idea is brilliant – I can think of lots of places where I could use that trick!

    • Reply
      October 5, 2014 at 7:57 pm

      Yeah the lollipop definitely worked as a bribe, sorry, motivation!

  • Reply
    Colette B
    October 6, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    You know what – I’m not remotely sporty either and don’t particularly like heights . . . but for some reason do quite fancy climbing. I’m sure Ben would love it too!

    • Reply
      October 7, 2014 at 8:05 am

      It’s not that high really, you can kind of climb across if you like too! Go on, you know you want to! X

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