By Gayatri Mohanty
January 22, 2023 (IANSlife) It is stated that experience is the best teacher, and travel is undoubtedly one of the few activities that brings us closer to nature. One of the best ways to reinvent yourself and your value systems is to explore the depths of the earth, nature, and its amazing wonders. We can develop this soul connection through amazing adventures like mountaineering.
Although mountaineering needs extensive preparation and effort, it is nothing less than a spiritual experience. Mountaineering, one of the most demanding adventure sports, is difficult because it requires learning how to adapt to various climatic conditions while also surviving to reach the mountain summit.
“I like to believe that travel and adventure do not have to be gender stereotyped. There is nothing about mountaineering that a man can do and a woman cannot. Yes, the fact is that we don’t see as much woman participation as we do from men but that is rapidly changing as more women are keen to explore new challenges,” shares ace mountaineer Gayatri Mohanty.
For women, mountaineering may be a demanding and gratifying experience that has numerous physical and psychological advantages. Above all, it improves self-awareness and mental health. Here are 5 crucial suggestions that you must bear in mind if you are a lady eager to begin your climbing trip.
Learn basic mountaineering skills
Before embarking on a mountaineering journey, it's important to have a solid foundation of skills. This includes basic techniques like rope handling, ice axe use, and crampon usage. Moreover, ensure you research well about the location and its climatic conditions. This will ensure you can plan efficiently.
Find a mentor, take courses or join a club
Finding a mentor or joining a club can provide valuable guidance, support, and a sense of community. Experienced mountaineers can offer tips and advice on everything from training to equipment selection. Taking a course or attending a guided trip is a great way to gain experience and learn new skills while in a controlled and safe environment. This will be extremely helpful for beginners and help you gain education to avoid mistakes and stay safe.
Build a strong fitness base
Mountaineering requires a high level of physical fitness, so it's important to focus on building strength and endurance. Ensure you build your physical strength with activities like running, cycling, and weight training.
Invest in good equipment
Having the right equipment is essential for a successful and safe mountaineering experience. Invest in quality gear such as boots, crampons, and an ice axe, and make sure to properly maintain and care for your equipment.
Be prepared for personal hygiene
Mountaineering dates could overlap with menstrual cycles for women hence it is important to be prepared for the same. Bathrooms and running water are a luxury when it comes to mountaineering hence ensure you carry all your medications along with packs of toilet paper, and anti-bacterial wet wipes. Although there is no harm in trekking while menstruating, ensure you avoid overlap on dates as your body is prone to be weak and needs extra care and attention.
(Gayatri Mohanty, fitness coach, mountaineer, certified Zumba trainer, and nutritionist)
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