Rock-climbing provides alternative workout


Courtesy Kyra Pechart

Climbing to the top, sophomore Kyra Pechart practices belaying.Sophomores Kyra Pechart and MacKenzey Kologlu recently started rock climbing together after school.

In seventh grade, Mackenzey Kologlu began experiencing knee pain and soon discovered her thigh bones were inwardly rotated and her shin bones were outwardly rotated.

“It was something I was born with but I didn’t find out about it until I started having pain and got X-rays,” Kologlu said. “Because of this, I had to stop running, playing tennis and basketball. I tried many other sports but after a while, the pain would come back. I’ve always loved climbing, and when I found out about the [On the Edge rock climbing] team, I jumped at the chance and I love it.”

Sophomore Kyra Pechart Pechart was looking for a sport that would allow her to progress over time, gain muscle and get a good exercise while also being fun.

“I like that once you find a route that’s challenging for you and after time you’re able to do it, that feeling that you’re finally able to finish one of them that you couldn’t finish,” Pechart said.

There are two types of rock climbing: bouldering and belaying, which requires the climber to wear a harness and be attached to a rope. Bouldering is done with no harness, and the walls are about 13 feet high. They resemble the walls of a cave where they are overhanging and the climber has to go around different sides of the walls.

“My favorite part is completing a route that I’ve been working on for a long time,” Kologlu said. “I love the feeling of exhilaration when your hand touches the top hold. I personally like bouldering better just because there is more variety in the climbs, plus you look cooler doing it.”

Out of the two belaying season competitions, Kologlu placed third and seventh. 

“I love the competitions. They’re laid back but allow climbers to challenge themselves to their own extent,” Kologlu said. “Overall, it’s a great sport. It can get really hard at times but you just have to push through it. The hardest part for me is getting through the 50 jumping jacks in the warm-up. I hate jumping jacks.”

By Mackenzie Jerdon