The Wild Wonderment Of Climbing A Tree

by admin on June 2, 2014

Think back to when you were a child, still wild in your own right. Not yet domesticated by the indoctrinations of our culture. tree-climberBecause you had not spent many years in school, you still followed your instincts, your heart. It could be said that you were a young sage among men. These were your happiest years because of this. Now think back to your years as a young sage, remember when you found that perfect tree? What did you do? That is right, your curious mind had to discover the old wooden beasts upper realms. You had to conquer, solve the large wooden riddle. This was no simple puzzle book. To get to the top, to solve this tree, you had to create a marriage of mind and body. To think out the best route up while lifting your body up branch to branch, utilizing every muscle necessary available. It is my opinion that climbing trees is one of the best activities to develop yourself into a more intuitive, athletic and complete human animal. What is it that makes tree climbing such a beneficial exercise? Well, no two trees are the same, yet you still need to physically manage your way to the top. And because every tree is different, your brain is responsible figuring out how to get there. It is never easy and it is this challenge that creates an environment for brain and body development. Tree climbing requires a very broad spectrum of brain activity. Let us look at the skills, and thus the areas of the brain that are being exercised and developed.

  • Problem solving, decision making and planning (frontal lobe)- With each next step you need to decipher the trees code. Do I wrap my arm around the trunk and step up with my left foot and pull this branch with my right hand? No, it would be easier if I reached up with both hands and pulled my body high enough to get a footing on this tree knot. Whatever your plan of action, choose wisely.
  • Sensitivity, spatial and visual perception (primary sensory cortex)- Perhaps the most vital aspect of tree climbing, for your safety at least. You must be able to sense whether or not that small knot or dead branch is enough for you to hold yourself on. You must be able to sense which branch is within reach.
  • Balance, coordination and posture as well as force, steadiness and range of movement (cerebellum)- Climbing a tree is one of the best activities for learning balance, efficient movement and motor function in general for obvious reasons.
tree-climber

Shaking out mulberries!

To compliment this real life brain training, tree climbing develops you physically in a huge way.   A true full body workout.  You will improve in muscular strength, endurance, flexibility, stability and balance. It is clear that these basic functions, when exercised, allow for a much improved quality of life. In fact the deterioration of these functions is what makes it impossible for people to take care of themselves and continue living a healthy life on their own as they age. Of course if you need a reason to climb a tree, do it for your sweet tooth and climb a fruit tree!  So, my friends, Rewild thyself. Rechild thyself. Climb a tree.

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