Rock Climbing is a very masculine sport. There are those that say that women are not biologically made for climbing and lack the physical strength to do it. Some also believe that their delicate hands and fingers would be hurt, thus they can’t make it as rock climbers. Others object women from rock climbing on the grounds of sexual harassment among other things.
I disagree! Luckily, all my rock climbing guy friends welcome me into the rock climbing world!
What I’ve Experienced
At first, men were skeptical about me being a rock climber because for some reason they thought I was too short for rock climbing (I’m a short 5 foot 3″) . However, once they’ve seen me climb, that skepticism vanished.
I think a lot of these ideas are very outdated but in the past, there were times when this happened. Why?
Aspects of Sexual Harassment
I have heard about sexual harassment among women rock climbers. I do not know of anybody who has experienced this, nor am I saying it doesn’t exist. However, the instances are very rare and with proper precautions, it can be avoided.
Another reason why men may object women from rock climbing is because they’re afraid of being tempted by them.
It’s true that guys are more likely to cheat on their wives if their partners are attractive according to adultery statistics.
Size and Experience
The main problems that I have seen are the attitudes of those who think that rock climbing is a sport for tall, strong and experienced people.
The truth is, there are several types of rock climbing that cater to all different kinds of climbers. Some beginners can even climb with harnesses and ropes!
Family Gender Role Pathologizing
Some parents believe that rock climbing is not appropriate for girls because it’s a “manly” sport. They think that if their daughters engage in this kind of activity, they will become boyish and less feminine. On the contrary, most girls who are into rock climbing have both feminine and tomboyish qualities.
Other Feminine Traits
Even though the sport is quite masculine, I believe that women can have feminine qualities as well.
There’s a lady-like etiquette among female rock climbers that they adhere to. For example, when you go climbing in a group, the first person to climb up would usually wait for everyone else to climb before going up again. This is good training in patience and manners.
It doesn’t matter what other people think of you. Women can rock climb just as well as men can! Women should continue to pursue this goal.