By Easton Oliver, Contributing Writer
OBU’s Climbing Club is searching for anyone who is willing to elevate their competition this fall.
The OBU Climbing Club offers a community for those looking to get into the climbing scene.
Participants see this club as more “alternative” than a traditional club sport, like flag football or soccer.
Regardless, it’s a rapidly growing scene in Oklahoma.
The recent establishment of climbing gyms in nearby metropolitan areas, like Threshold in Oklahoma City and ClimbUP in Norman, has brought renewed interest to climbing in Oklahoma.
Jacob Cunningham, member of the climbing team, struggled with a lack of climbing area before he came to OBU.
He has since been fascinated by the OBU rock climbing.
“I’ve always wanted to climb,” Cunningham said. “I lived two hours away from a climbing gym. When I came [to OBU], it was right here. It was accessible.”
Co-captain of the climbing club Josie Edgar believes that climbing has brought people together in the long run.
“I think that what’s really appealing about the sport is the community,” Edgar said. “It’s a really encouraging community, especially here at OBU. I think that we are good at doing that in a Christ-like manner.”
When it comes to the climbing team, one of their large focuses is competition. The team will travel around the state, and sometimes outside of it, to test themselves against other teams.
“We have a lot more competing members than we used to have,” Ed-gar said.
As the team grows, they’ll become more competitive at the upcoming rounds of fall competitions. Edgar said she’s confident in the future for the team as a whole.
“Everyone is really working to get better, so I think that we’ll perform well at competition this semester,” Edgar said.
The climbing club is not only about competition. Members who train individually can succeed just as well as someone who prefers to train with a group of people.
“We are a team, but it’s also a sport that’s very focused toward individual improvement,” Josie said. “So, if there’s someone who really likes to focus on self-improvement and getting stronger themselves, then it’s a really good sport for that. It’s a full body workout every time.”
The community aspect of the climbing team is a theme that consistently keeps members together.
“The community is super, super sick. I love all the people that are in the climbing club,” Cunningham said. “Even if you don’t want to compete, or aren’t good at it, if you’re enjoying it, definitely still join.”
Though the forty-foot wall may be daunting for some, Cunningham believes that there is no harm in trying.
“I think everybody should try it,” Cunningham said. “You should try everything once. If it’s your thing, then it’s your thing. You should definitely join the club if you find yourself enjoying it.”
Students interested in being part of climbing club don’t have to look far to get involved.
“Come to the wall and get plugged in with the community,” Edgar said. “Then ask one of the co-captains, Ben Dingus or me – about joining up with the club. We currently have several open spots that we’re looking to fill.”
More than that, it’s all about coming together, Cunningham said.
“Keep climbing, get better and hang out with us,” Cunningham said.